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Solar panel dumping ban on the agenda for Queensland

A possible ban on dumping end-of-life solar panels and batteries into landfill has been put on the agenda for the sunshine state.

Queensland Environment Minister Meaghan Scanlon on Sunday unveiled a draft e-products plan featuring a proposal to ban solar panels and other related equipment from being dumped into landfill.

Almost 1000 tonnes of solar photovoltaic (solar PV) and battery storage was dumped into landfills across the state in 2019 and that figure is expected to grow.

"It is forecast that by 2030 the mix of e-waste generated per annum will change significantly. Solar PV and battery storage waste will grow the fastest to over 17,000 tonnes," the 28-page draft report reads.

The 10-year draft plan will be complemented by an industry-led solar panel recycling scheme, with the government tipping in an initial $250,000 to fund a two-stage pilot program.

The pilot will firstly identify participants and places to divert end-of-life solar panels from landfill, and develop a tracking and information system to log volumes and locations of recovered materials.

On-ground collection, recovery and recycling of panels will then form the focus of the pilot's second stage.

Members of the public, industry and business representatives have been invited to give feedback on the draft action plan by April 17.

"With the highest rooftop solar penetration in the country, we need to explore how we deal with panels when they reach the end of their life," Ms Scanlon said in a statement.

"The draft plan shows that Queensland is serious about dealing with electronic waste and now we want to hear from Queenslanders and industry to make sure we get it right."

Other measures raised in the draft strategy include a mobile repair service to travel to regional areas to extend the life of e-products and equipping e-products retailers with educational materials to "buy better, choose well and make it last".