An innovative technique that promises to recycle scrapped wind turbine blades into “near-virgin quality” glass fibres for re-use is being pioneered by Norway’s Aker Horizons and the University of Strathclyde, in Scotland.

The method, which combines a thermal recovery process to break down the glass-reinforced polymer (GRP) composites used in blades with post-treatment of glass fibres, could be transformative for the global wind industry, where, by the university’s calculations, there is going to be an increase of yearly blade waste from around 400,000 tonnes in 2030 to around 2 million tonnes by mid-century.