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Economic assessment of current rate of the recycling fee for PV modules placed on the market till 31. 12. 2012 in terms of the Waste Act and proposal of potential change in fee with respect the legal obligations

Solution period: 06/01/2015 - 09/30/2015
Contract authority: Ministry of the Environment of the Czech Republic
Registration number: CES 150116
Contact: Ondřej Vojáček (vojacek@ireas.cz)

There was a dispute over the rate of the recycling fee for photovoltaic modules. What is the corresponding rate? Based on the results, a reduction in the rate was recommended.

The project was focused on the assessment of the current rate of the recycling fee deposits paid by solar power plant owners and collective system operators who will have to deal with solar panel disposal at the end of their lifespan. The current fee was set to CZK 8.5/kg of PV module and it has to be paid by 2019. The fee has been criticized as being excessively high.
The current system includes all the modules installed before 2013 (most of the installations in the Czech Republic), which is approximately 2,124 MWp of installed capacity.

The IREAS carried out a critical analysis of the rate and the purpose of the recycling fee deposits and the possible costs and revenues of PV module recycling. The analysis included an estimation of the administrative costs, transportation costs and costs associated with collecting the modules. All the parts of the analysis are based on own calculations and extensive consultation both in the Czech Republic and abroad.

Conclusions of the project:

Based on the analysis, a fee adjustment to CZK 5.2-7.8/kg of PV module was proposed to the Ministry of the Environment of the Czech Republic. Additionally, a revision of the current system of payments and liabilities of the individual stakeholders was proposed. Significant changes to the current system were proposed in the case of small installations (up to 10 kWp).

The results were used by the Ministry of the Environment of the Czech Republic in negotiations about changes to the rate and the scheme of future recycling fees. 

Research team: Ondřej Vojáček, Jiří Louda, Jan Macháč, Lenka Zaňková (Zemková), Ladislav Sobotka.