New Delhi: The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has identified Solar PV Recycling as one of the priority thrust areas under “Renewable Energy Research and Technology Development Programme (RE-RTD),” said Minister for New and Renewable Energy RK Singh on Thursday. Responding to a question raised in the Lok Sabha, Singh said, “MNRE has identified Solar PV Recycling as one of the priority thrust areas under RE-RTD in which some research projects have been received for recycling and recovery of critical materials.”
The MNRE supports the RE-RTD scheme through various research institutions and industry to enable indigenous technology development and manufacture for widespread applications of new and renewable energy in an efficient and cost-effective manner across the country with the aim of increasing the share of renewables in the energy mix in the country.
Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Government of India has notified the E-Waste (Management) Rules, 2022 on November 2, 2022. These rules replace E-Waste (Management) Rules, 2016 with effect from April 1, 2023. These rules have been notified for environmentally sound management of e-waste generated from electrical and electronic equipment, including solar photo-voltaic (PV) modules or panels or cells.
As per these rules, every manufacturer and producer of solar photo-voltaic modules or panels or cells has been mandated to obtain registration, maintain inventory of solar PV modules, store the waste generated from Solar PV modules/panels/cells up to the year 2034-35 as per the guidelines laid down under the rules, ﬁle annual returns, comply with Standard Operating Procedures, and process the waste other than solar PV modules as per the applicable waste management rules. Further, Recycler of solar photo-voltaic modules or panels or cells shall be mandated for recovery of material as laid down by the Central Pollution Control Board.
Under these rules, the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) is mandated to prepare and issue guidelines and Standard Operating Procedures for collection, storage, transportation, segregation, refurbishment, dismantling, recycling and disposal of e-waste, including solar photo-voltaic modules or panels or cells waste. There is currently no proposal to setup a separate regulatory body in addition to the regulatory framework existent under the E-waste (Management) Rules, 2022 to protect against the financial losses incurred in waste collection and treatment.