Netherlands raises fee for solar module recycling


The Dutch government has announced plans to raise the fee for solar module recycling from July 1.

“Originally, the fee was €6.50 per ton of sold panels, but it will be increased to €40 per ton,” Jan Willem Jehee, manager operations at Stichting Zonne-energie Recycling Nederland (ZRN), told pv magazine, noting that the new rate will apply at least up to the end of 2025. “The fee will be used for solar panel recycling, so it will not be used to subsidize anything. It is meant as a buffer to be able to keep stable pricing in the future, when the waste streams will rise sharply.”

PV module importers will have to pay the fee to the OPEN Foundation, which is a Dutch nongovernmental organization.

“OPEN Foundation will establish the guarantee fund in line with the conditions that were agreed with the market,” ZRN said in a statement. “One important precondition in this is that a level playing field is created. This means that Open will take the steps required to ensure that each Dutch manufacturer or Dutch importer pays the recycling charge.”

An unspecified research agency has provided OPEN Foundation with a list of Dutch importers. All of the unregistered importers on the list will be approached by OPEN Foundation, in order to reach full compliance. In addition, preparations are being made for the introduction of a visible recycling fee.

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“A visible recycling fee entails having a separate line on the invoice that specifies the amount paid for recycling,” said Jehee.

ZNR claimed that the guarantee fund will help the sector to meet the conditions of the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Directive.

“One of the legislator’s demands is that there are always enough resources to pay for the recycling of solar panels,” ZNR added. “In now establishing this guarantee fund, this demand is met and the rates in the future can remain stable and predictable.”

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