Nano and Other Emerging Chemical Technologies Blog

Nano and Other Emerging Chemical Technologies Blog

Regulatory & legal developments involving nano and other emerging chemical technologies

Archives: Environmental Issues

Subscribe to Environmental Issues RSS Feed

Reader-Friendly Version of 2006 EC Report Available

Posted in Environmental Issues, International, Legal/Regulatory Issues
The European Commission (EC) Directorate General for Health and Consumer Protection retained GreenFacts to summarize the EC’s 2006 report entitled Modified Opinion (After Public Consultation) on the Appropriateness of Existing Methodologies to Assess the Potential Risks Associated with Engineered and Adventitious Products of Nanotechnologies. According to GreenFacts, the EC’s Scientific Committee on Emerging and Newly Identified… Continue Reading

CDTSC Will Hold Symposium on Potential Hazards of Nanomaterials in the Environment

Posted in Environmental Issues, Legal/Regulatory Issues, State, United States
The California Department of Toxic Substances Control (CDTSC) will hold a symposium entitled “Nanotechnology Symposium II:  Potential Hazards of Nanomaterials in the Environment” on October 3, 2007. The draft agenda includes the following topics:  Chemical Properties and Commercial/Industrial Applications of Nanotechnology; Physico-Chemical Characterization of Nanoparticles and Its Relation to Their Bio-Interactions; Potential Ecotoxicity of Nanoparticles Released… Continue Reading

EHS Research Priorities Released for Comment

Posted in Environmental Issues, Federal, Legal/Regulatory Issues, Occupational Health and Safety Issues, United States
On August 16, 2007, the National Nanotechnology Coordination Office (NNCO), on behalf of the Nanoscale Science, Engineering, and Technology (NSET) Subcommittee of the Committee on Technology, National Science and Technology Council (NSTC), published a notice in the Federal Register announcing the availability of a document entitled The Prioritization of Environmental, Health, and Safety Research Needs… Continue Reading

The Nanoethics Group Publishes Major Anthology

Posted in Environmental Issues
On August 1, 2007, the Nanoethics Group announced the release of a collection of papers entitled Nanoethics: The Ethical and Social Implications of Nanotechnology, which addresses issues related to nanotechnology’s impact on society. The anthology includes papers from nearly 40 experts worldwide and includes topics related to benefits, risk, environment, health, human enhancement, privacy, military, democracy, education,… Continue Reading

International Coalition Urges Nano-Specific Regulations

Posted in Environmental Issues, International, Legal/Regulatory Issues, Occupational Health and Safety Issues, Other, United States
On July 31, 2007, an international coalition of consumer, public health, environmental, and labor organizations issued the Principles for the Oversight of Nanotechnologies and Nanomaterials and called for strong, comprehensive oversight of the new technology and its products. According to the coalition, the manufacture of products using technology has “exploded in recent years,” while “evidence indicates… Continue Reading

Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists Issues Statement on the Occupational and Environmental Risks of Nanotechnology

Posted in Environmental Issues, Federal, Legal/Regulatory Issues, Occupational Health and Safety Issues, United States
The Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE) recently issued a position statement on nanotechnology risks. The CSTE statement observes that the “health, safety and environmental effects of nanomaterials are poorly understood,” and that “our limited knowledge of [nanotechnology’s] potential harm is cause for concern.” Among other things, CSTE calls: for increased funding for research on the… Continue Reading

EPA Awards Almost $600,000 to Oregon State University Nanotechnology Researchers

Posted in Environmental Issues, Occupational Health and Safety Issues, United States
On June 22, 2007, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the award of two research grants totaling almost $600,000 to scientists at Oregon State University, who will evaluate whether some engineered nanomaterials adversely affect human health. Under the first research grant, scientists will review a variety of commonly manufactured nanomaterials to determine their potential interactions… Continue Reading

Final Nano Risk Framework Released

Posted in Environmental Issues, Legal/Regulatory Issues, Occupational Health and Safety Issues, United States
On June 21, 2007, Environmental Defense (ED) and DuPont, who commenced a partnership on nanotechnology in September 2005, released the final Nano Risk Framework, which establishes “a systematic and disciplined process for identifying, managing, and reducing potential environmental, health, and safety risks of engineered nanomaterials across all stages of a product’s ‘lifecycle.’” The Framework is aimed… Continue Reading

European Commission’s Green Week 2007 Includes Nanotechnologies

Posted in Environmental Issues, International
The European Commission (EC) will hold its annual Green Week in Brussels, Belgium, from June 12-15, 2007.  On June 14, 2007, an afternoon session will examine the benefits of nanotechnology for the environment and on how nanotechnologies could help to solve major environmental problems, e.g., climate change, energy efficiency, resources use, remediation and pollution prevention,… Continue Reading

UK Releases Report on Environmentally Beneficial Nanotechnologies

Posted in Environmental Issues, EU Member State
On May 17, 2005, the United Kingdom’s (UK) Department for Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) released a report entitled Environmentally Beneficial Nanotechnologies: Barriers and Opportunities, which provides the results of a study exploring ways in which nanotechnology could reduce the use of non-renewable energy sources and greenhouse gas emissions. The study investigated the opportunities and potential… Continue Reading

NRDC Report Claims U.S. Has Failed to Protect Citizens from Nanomaterials

Posted in Environmental Issues, Federal, Legal/Regulatory Issues, United States
On May 15, 2007, the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) issued a report entitled Nanotechnology’s Invisible Threat: Small Science, Big Consequences, which claims that the U.S. government has failed “to use its authority to protect citizens from the potentially dangerous effects of nano-scale chemistry.”… Continue Reading

Researchers Review Environmental and Human Health Knowledge Base of Carbon Nanotubes

Posted in Environmental Issues, Occupational Health and Safety Issues
On May 10, 2007, EHP-in-Press posted an article entitled “Reviewing the Environmental and Human Health Knowledge Base of Carbon Nanotubes.” The authors reviewed the currently available literature about the human health and environmental risk potential of carbon nanotubes (CNT). The authors also investigated the life cycle of the CNT, as release into different environmental compartments may occur… Continue Reading

European Commission Seeks Comment on Nanomaterials Risk Evaluation Report

Posted in Environmental Issues, International, Legal/Regulatory Issues, Occupational Health and Safety Issues
On April 11, 2007, the European Commission (EC) announced that the report prepared by the Scientific Committee on Emerging and Newly Identified Health Risks (SCENIHR) regarding the appropriateness of the risk assessment methodology for assessing the risks of nanomaterials is available for comment. Comments are due May 23, 2007. EC states that the report “provides the Commission… Continue Reading

ICON Launches Nanotechnology Journal

Posted in Environmental Issues, Federal, Legal/Regulatory Issues, Occupational Health and Safety Issues, United States
The International Council on Nanotechnology (ICON) and Rice University’s Center for Biological and Environmental Nanotechnology (CBEN) announced on March 22, 2007, they have launched a monthly online journal that contains citations and links to articles on the environment and health impacts of nanotechnology. The ICON and CBEN coalition launched the first online database of nanomaterial scientific… Continue Reading

PEN Releases LCA Report

Posted in Environmental Issues, EU Member State, International, Legal/Regulatory Issues, Occupational Health and Safety Issues, United States
On March 20, 2007, the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies (PEN) released a report entitled Nanotechnology and Life Cycle Assessment: A Systems Approach to Nanotechnology and the Environment, which summarizes the results of the October 2-3, 2006, workshop organized by PEN and the European Commission on life cycle assessment (LCA). LCA is… Continue Reading

Senate Requests GAO Review of NNI

Posted in Environmental Issues, Federal, Legal/Regulatory Issues, Occupational Health and Safety Issues, Research
In a March 15, 2007, letter, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation and the Congressional Nanotechnology Caucus requested that the Government Accountability Office (GAO) review the National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI), which was created to accelerate the discovery, development, and deployment of nanoscale science and technology. For fiscal year 2006, NNI received $1.2 billion in… Continue Reading