Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Recycling and Reuse Program

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As is common with fast-growing markets, little thought has been given until recently to end-of-life disposal considerations for solar modules. Currently, solar disposal makes up only a small percentage of the number being installed, and the majority of disposal presently in the U.S. is due to damage to the panels during transportation and installation or from severe weather events.

The design life of a solar module is 30 years. In the next 5-10 years, states will begin to see a sharp spike in the number of modules that will need to be reused or recycled. Solutions include:

  • Early engagement on module takeback models with national, state, and local stakeholders
  • Feedback loops with public utilities and contractors for resource and system planning
  • Consideration for impacts on landfills, collection and transportation for reuse, recycling, and secondary material markets
  • Education and outreach to businesses & communities

The Water Tap: How has water use changed in the west since 2000?

Read the full story from the St. George Spectrum & Daily News.

Lately, it seems everyone is obsessed with maps of the nation colored differently based on data for each region. So perhaps you will enjoy this new map by Brian Richter, president of Sustainable Waters, a global water education organization, showcasing the daily per capita water consumption from public water supplies in different counties based on 2015 data from the United States Geological Survey.

Disaster database is go-to hub for natural hazard information

Read the full story from the Texas Advanced Computing Center.

In Seattle, “the big one” — a massive earthquake that could devastate the region — represents an ominous threat. So widespread are the concerns that city leaders there created standards to fortify new skyscrapers using data from studies forecasting the impact of a big earthquake in the region.

The Seattle mega-quake scenario is one of hundreds of data sets published on DesignSafe, a database for natural disaster information created by researchers at The University of Texas at Austin that has changed how planners, builders, policymakers and engineers prepare for and respond to hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes and more. The data repository gives researchers the ability to formally publish data sets related to natural disaster studies in the same way research papers are published in journals, giving them an accessible digital home.

Waste-minimal DeliverZero is the sustainable alternative to third-party food delivery

Read the full story at Restaurant Hospitality.

DeliverZero — which delivers food in reusable containers that are returned by customers — has expanded to nearly 100 New York City restaurants

e.l.f. Streamlines Packaging Footprint

Read the full story at Happi.

e.l.f. Beauty is celebrating a milestone on its sustainability journey, eliminating approximately 650,000 pounds of packaging material within its e.l.f. Cosmetics brand, in addition to receiving three design patents as a result of the company’s ‘Project Unicorn’ initiative.

State museum puts fossil, biological specimens online

Read the full story in the Las Cruces Bulletin.

The New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science (NMMNHS) has opened the door to more than 110,000 fossil and biological specimens. Thanks to an anonymous gift, the museum’s collection records are now publicly available through Arctos, an online database, at

How two companies are building systems to scale reuse, which is vital for a circular economy

Read the full story in GreenBiz.

In 2017, containers and packaging made up a significant portion of municipal solid waste (MSW), about 80.1 million tons (29.9 percent of total MSW generation), according to the EPA. Reuse can reduce the amount of waste that will need to be recycled or sent to landfills and incinerators. 

The Case for Reviving the Civilian Conservation Corps

Read the full story in Wired.

If the US brought back the Great Depression’s massive worker program, it could put millions of Americans back to work—and help stave off disasters like wildfires.

Simulating the pandemic: What COVID forecasters can learn from climate models

Read the full story in Nature.

Methods that are routine in computation-heavy fields could lead to more reliable pandemic predictions.

Brand interest in reuse rising, but it still accounts for less than 2% of plastic packaging market

Read the full story in Waste Dive.

The Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s latest progress report on where consumer goods companies stand on the New Plastics Economy Global Commitment shows substantial work ahead.

Associated report: Global Commitment 2020 Progress Report