AGL Energy has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Solar Recovery Corporation (SRC) for a feasibility study into establishing a solar photovoltaic (PV) panel materials recovery facility in the Latrobe Valley as part of AGL’s commitment to repurposing AGL Loy Yang into the Latrobe Valley Energy Hub.

SRC will be the first manufacturing supply chain focussed organisation to explore being part of the site transformation which also includes plans for AGL to install a grid-scale battery.

AGL believes that valuable materials reuse will be essential in the development of a circular economy and that the Latrobe Valley Energy Hub is an ideal site to explore this opportunity.

The feasibility study will look at establishing a facility to remanufacture end-of-life solar panels at AGL’s Latrobe Valley Energy Hub. The study will also explore training and employment opportunities for the local community to build the new skillsets required for the energy and manufacturing industries of the future.

AGL Energy Chief Operating Officer Markus Brokhof said the agreement marks an important first step in transforming AGL Loy Yang into an industrial renewable Energy Hub in the Latrobe Valley as well in line with our ambition to establish a circular economy at our sites.

“In one of the most significant decarbonisation initiatives in Australia, AGL has set an ambitious and accelerated path to decarbonisation – exiting coal fired generation up to a decade earlier by mid-2035, looking to develop 12 GW of renewable and firming capacity by 2036 and repurposing our sites into industrial hubs. It’s clear that the world is changing, and so is AGL,” Mr Brokhof said.

“We are pleased to be partnering with the Solar Recovery Corporation to build a recycling facility at our Loy Yang site. AGL will also recycle our end-of-life solar panels at the company’s facilities as we work together to achieve a lower carbon future and build a circular economy.

“We are proud to be supporting SRC’s mission to find new ways to deal with end-of-life solar PV panels.”

SRC Chairman Rob Gell AM said the signing of the MOU highlights that SRC is future focussed and looking to expand operations to new regions in Australia.

“We’re excited to be exploring the opportunity to set up a facility that will recover valuable materials from end-of-life solar panels and to potentially be the first manufacturer to be part of AGL’s Latrobe Valley Energy Hub,” said Mr Gell.

“SRC was founded as part of a circular solution for end-of-life solar PV panels and to repurpose the materials for manufacturing industries. It feels fitting that we are working with AGL as part of their ambition to reimagine the end-of-site transformation of AGL Loy Yang into a cleaner low carbon hub.”

As part of AGL’s Climate Transition Action Plan, the company is committed to repurposing former thermal sites in the Hunter, Torrens Island and Latrobe Valley into industrial renewable energy hubs to support regional economic activity and create local employment opportunities.