Koehler SB 3790 rPEORIA – A new law championed by State Senator Dave Koehler will keep Illinois on track toward a greener future by expanding recycling opportunities for renewable energy technology.

“Sustainable energy isn’t really sustainable when it requires technology that can’t be reused and is difficult to recycle,” said Koehler (D-Peoria). “As we look to expand the widespread use of renewable energy, we have a responsibility to safely dispose of any associated waste.”

As much as one million total tons of solar panel waste is estimated to accumulate in the United States by 2030, and the U.S. is expected to have the second largest number of retired solar panels in the world by 2050, with as many as an estimated 10 million total tons of panels.

States such as California, Hawaii, New Jersey, North Carolina and Washington have already implemented strategies to address this excess waste, and Illinois would join these states by creating a Renewable Energy Component Recycling Task Force under Senate Bill 3790. The task force will be responsible for investigating options for recycling and other end of life methods for renewable generation components and energy storage devices, and is required to report its findings to the General Assembly by March 1, 2023.

“Our hope is that the task force is able to find new, innovative ways to recycle and reuse materials from our solar panels, ultimately increasing the sustainability of solar energy in Illinois,” said Koehler.

The legislation was signed Friday and goes into effect immediately.

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