Q&A: Solar recycler sees big opportunities in climate law

By Christian Robles | 04/22/2024 06:35 AM EDT

The chief executive of Solarcycle said the Inflation Reduction Act is reshaping his industry.

Suvi Sharma, CEO of Solarcycle.

Suvi Sharma, CEO of Solarcycle. Michael Mazengarb/Flickr, Linkedin

When Suvi Sharma started Solarcycle in 2022, finding ways to repurpose old solar panels that could end in landfills was among his primary motivations.

“What I saw having been in the solar industry for nearly 20 years is that this problem is going to get big quickly,” the CEO of the solar recycling company said in an interview. “The other side of that coin is an opportunity.”

Experts say the recent spike in U.S. solar installations will generate more solar panel waste once today’s panels reach the end of their lives in 30 to 35 years.


Solar waste is projected to grow to between 54 million and 160 million metric tons total in the U.S. by 2050 from a few million today, according to research published last year in Nature Physics and authored in part by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.