Metrology for the Recycling of Technology Critical Elements to Support Europe’s Circular Economy

Technology critical elements (TCEs) are vastly used throughout societal consumer products; including phones, computers, and renewable energy products, such as solar panels and wind turbines. These elements are deemed critical due to their economic importance and supply risk. However, dwindling supplies of TCEs threaten to disrupt such technology production worldwide, which is especially concerning given a recent drive for more renewable energy sources as part of the European Green Deal. Thus, there is a drive for the European Union (EU) to strive for a circular economy approach that reduces dependence on imports of such raw materials. To provide a more secure supply of TCEs, the EU promotes more efficient recycling through the Waste
Framework Directive (2018/851/EU).

Recent historical events have shown that now, more than ever, it is imperative that the European Union (EU) strives towards a more circular economy and avoid dependence on imports from other countries. Technology critical elements (TCEs), which are irreplaceable in the majority of technology that forms the basis of modern society as well as for renewable energy technology, are one such group of raw materials that suffer from potential supply risks due doglobal stock shortages and selected countries who produce them. In 2017, the European Commission issued new targets for the recycling of TCE containing waste (2018/851/EU), such as electronic waste, however these targets are not currently being met due to the low availability of methods and materials used to accurately measure these elements in electronic waste products.Thus, the Metro CycleEU project has been introduced to provide analytical solutions for the measurement of TCEs in electronic waste, such as digestion of the material and development of reference materials, in order to aid the recycling industry.

Copyright: © Lehrstuhl für Abfallverwertungstechnik und Abfallwirtschaft der Montanuniversität Leoben
Quelle: Recy & Depotech 2022 (November 2022)
Seiten: 2
Preis inkl. MwSt.: € 1,00
Autor: Shaun T. Lancaster

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