New Rule in the Works: End-of-Life Solar Panels and Lithium Batteries as Universal Wastes

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced on October 23rd that they are planning to propose new rules to improve the management and recycling of end-of-life solar panels and lithium batteries.

Some solar panels, though not all, contain enough metals to meet the definition of hazardous waste and lithium batteries can cause fires when improperly discarded or mismanaged. If solar panels are added to the universal waste regulations and tailored universal waste standards are added for lithium batteries then generators could benefit from streamlined regulatory requirements. 

Note: any universal waste designations will not be recognized in the State of Nevada until there is a final US EPA rule and the State completes an update to its adoption by reference of the federal RCRA regulations. 

Please contact BEP with any questions on how to properly manage and dispose of solar panels and lithium batteries under current regulation.