Solar Panel Recycling Market Size, Share, Opportunities, COVID-19 Impact, And Trends By Panel Type (Silicon-Based, Thin-Film Based), By Material (Glass, Metal, Others), And By Geography - Forecasts From 2021 To 2026

Published:  Dec 2021 Report Code: KSI061611634 Pages: 114

The solar panel recycling market was valued at US$83.322 million in 2019 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 25.43% over the forecast period to reach a total market size of US$407.033 million by 2026.

Solar energy has been widely adopted and utilised in the existing energy mix during the last decade. The average expected lifetime of solar panels used on ground-mounted, building-integrated photovoltaic (BIPV), or floating solar panels is 30 years. These panels typically contain cadmium, lead, and several toxic chemicals, and it is critical to remove or recycle these toxic elements from the environment in order to avoid hazardous altercations.

Rising customer awareness of the increased benefits of sustainable energy sources, as well as subsidies provided by provincial governments, is a critical factor driving market growth, as is an increase in the number of installations of solar photovoltaic modules, rising adoption of solar panels, rising government regulations, increasing effective disposal of solar panels, and an increase in the number of solar panel installations as an alternative to other non-eco-friendly sources are the key drivers driving the solar panel recycling industry, among others. In the European Union, legislation (Directive 2002/96/EC on WEEE) was drafted to establish collection programmes in which customers may return their used waste equipment for free. The goal of the directive is to increase the recycling and/or re-use of such products. The objective of the directive involves collecting 4 kg of such waste per resident per year for waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) from households. Furthermore, rising technological advancement and modernization in manufacturing processes, as well as rising research and development activities in the industry, would provide new opportunities for the solar panel recycling market throughout the projected period. However, a lack of awareness regarding solar panel recycling is a key restriction that would further challenge the growth of the solar panel recycling market.

solar panel recycling market

The solar panel recycling market is expected to expand at a rapid rate in the Asia-Pacific region. With growing environmental concerns and industrialisation, particularly in Asia-Pacific, the regional solar power-producing capacity have acquired significant traction. Countries such as China and India are prominent solar power generating countries in the region, with a high percentage of solar panel installations. China manufactures around 71% of global solar panels total capacity. Furthermore, due to the older and ageing existing infrastructure, the solar panel recycling market is gaining traction.

Growth Factors:

  • The rise in solar energy waste:

Solar panels have a functional life of 20 to 25 years and must be changed after that. Photovoltaic modules contain heavy metals and so cannot be disposed of in landfills. As a result, the solar panel recycling business has enormous potential. The solar panel can be dismantled into multiple parts and recycled using a variety of methods, including mechanical, thermal, chemical, laser, and combination. The total volume of accumulated global solar panel waste is expected to reach 60 to 78 million tonnes by 2050, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). As a result, the rise in solar waste is projected to fuel the worldwide solar panel recycling industry. Furthermore, solar energy is both affordable and ecologically beneficial. According to the International Energy Agency, solar PV is the new leader of power supply and is set for rapid growth. From 2020 to 2030, solar PV will increase by 13 % annually, providing nearly one-third of the energy consumption demand.  Hence, the global demand for solar energy is growing.


  • High-cost of recycling:

The lack of awareness and general interest in developing countries in the Asia Pacific region is likely to stifle market expansion. Recycling is more expensive than landfilling, and the value of recovered on scraps is less than the original, therefore interest in recycling is minimal. Solar panel recycling is still very expensive; nevertheless, researchers are exploring novel recycling technologies. The waste contains silicon, calcium, lead, and other toxic compounds (including carcinogens) that cannot be removed without breaking the panel.

Impact of COVID-19 on the Solar Panel Recycling Market:

The global solar recycling market has stagnated due to the covid-19 pandemic. China, which has the most photovoltaic installations as well as is the largest manufacture of photovoltaic solar panels, was the epicentre of the pandemic. This attribute is expected to affect the global solar supply chain. The pandemic, on the other hand, had crippled power consumption and production, which may limit the growth of the solar panel recycling market. Furthermore, Due to the suspension of industrial and construction activities, the country is facing a wave of low capacity additions. 

Key Developments:

  • In August 2021, solar PV manufacturer Next Energy and trading conglomerate Marubeni worked on deploying a blockchain system for solar panel recycling as part of a programme backed by Japan's Ministry of the Environment.
  • With the goal of diverting solar panels from landfills, the Bundaberg Regional Council of Queensland implemented a hefty charge on disposing of unwanted solar panels at its waste facilities in August 2021.
  • Lotus Energy build Australia's first solar panel recycling plant in August 2021, to address the "solar waste problem."

Solar Panel Recycling Market Scope:

Report Metric Details
 Market size value in 2019  US$83.322 million
 Market size value in 2026  US$407.033 million
 Growth Rate  CAGR of 25.43% from 2019 to 2026
 Base year  2019
 Forecast period  2021–2026
 Forecast Unit (Value)  USD Million
 Segments covered  Panel Type, Material, And Geography
 Regions covered  North America, South America, Europe, Middle East and Africa, Asia Pacific
 Companies covered  Reclaim PV Recycling, Recycle Solar Technologies Ltd., First Solar, Envaris, Veolia,   Recycle PV Solar LLC, We Recycle Solar, Cleanites Recycling, NPC Incorporated,   Rinovasol, Ecoactiv
 Customization scope  Free report customization with purchase



  • By Panel Type
    • Silicon-based
    • Thin film-based
  • By Material
    • Glass
    • Metal
    • Others
  • By Geography
    • Americas
    • Europe Middle East and Africa
    • Asia Pacific

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q1. What will be the solar panel recycling market size by 2026?
A1. The solar panel recycling market is expected to reach a total market size of US$407.033 million in 2026.

Q2. What are the growth prospects for the solar panel recycling market?
A2. The global solar panel recycling market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 25.43% over the forecast period.

Q3. What is the size of the global solar panel recycling market?
A3. Solar Panel Recycling Market was valued at US$83.322 million in 2019.

Q4. What factors are anticipated to drive the solar panel recycling market growth?
A4. Rising customer awareness of the increased benefits of sustainable energy sources, as well as subsidies provided by provincial governments, is a critical factor driving solar panel recycling market growth.

Q5. Which region holds the largest market share in the solar panel recycling market?
A5. The solar panel recycling market is expected to expand at a rapid rate in the Asia-Pacific region.

1. Introduction
1.1. Market Definition
1.2. Market Segmentation

2. Research Methodology
2.1. Research Data
2.2. Assumptions

3. Executive Summary
3.1. Research Highlights

4. Market Dynamics
4.1. Market Drivers
4.2. Market Restraints
4.3. Porters Five Forces Analysis
4.3.1. Bargaining Power of Suppliers
4.3.2. Bargaining Power of Buyers
4.3.3. The threat of New Entrants
4.3.4. Threat of Substitutes
4.3.5. Competitive Rivalry in the Industry
4.4. Industry Value Chain Analysis

5. Solar Panel Recycling Market Analysis, By Panel Type
5.1. Introduction
5.2. Silicon-based
5.3. Thin film-based

6. Solar Panel Recycling Market Analysis, By Material
6.1. Introduction
6.2. Glass
6.3. Metal
6.4. Others

7. Solar Panel Recycling Market Analysis, By Geography 
7.1.  Introduction
7.2.  Americas
7.3. Europe Middle East and Africa
7.4. Asia Pacific

8. Competitive Environment and Analysis
8.1. Major Players and Strategy Analysis
8.2.  Emerging Players and Market Lucrativeness
8.3.  Mergers, Acquisitions, Agreements, and Collaborations
8.4.  Vendor Competitiveness Matrix

9. Company Profiles
9.1. Reclaim PV Recycling
9.2. Recycle Solar Technologies Ltd.
9.3. First Solar
9.4. Envaris
9.5. Veolia
9.6. Recycle PV Solar LLC
9.7. We Recycle Solar
9.8. Cleanites Recycling
9.9. NPC Incorporated
9.10. Rinovasol
9.11. Ecoactiv

Reclaim PV Recycling

Recycle Solar Technologies Ltd.

First Solar



Recycle PV Solar LLC

We Recycle Solar

Cleanites Recycling

NPC Incorporated




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