On March 19, 2009, the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (CDTSC) will hold a full-day nanotechnology symposium on nanomaterials regulation from a variety of perspectives. According to CDTSC, the symposium will focus on the regulatory aspects of nanotechnology, the role of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and CDTSC’s chemical information call-in program including nanoscale materials. CDTSC states that federal interest in nanomaterial regulation and California’s efforts “provide a great opportunity for fostering technological advances that recognize environmental and public health concerns. The goal is to create a partnership where we can enhance research where needed and promote sustainable processes as well as applications.” Registration is required. The symposium will also be available via web cast.


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In a January 22, 2009, letter, the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (CDTSC) announced that it is requiring the submission of data “regarding analytical test methods, fate and transport in the environment, and other relevant information from manufacturers of carbon nanotubes” (CNT). CDTSC states that the term “manufacturers” includes persons and businesses that produce

On September 18, 2008, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that, to ensure nanotechnology is developed in a responsible manner, the National Science Foundation (NSF) and EPA awarded $38 million to establish two Centers for the Environmental Implications of Nanotechnology (CEIN).  EPA contributed $5 million to the overall award, which is the largest award for nanotechnology research in its history.  The CEINs will conduct research on the possible environmental, health, and safety impacts of nanomaterials, using very different approaches than previous studies. Led by the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) and Duke University, the CEINs will study how nanomaterials interact with the environment and human health, and are intended to result in better risk assessment and mitigation strategies to be used in the commercial development of nanotechnology.  Each CEIN will work as a network, connected to multiple research organizations, industry, and government agencies, and will emphasize interdisciplinary research and education.


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On April 25, 2008, the California Nanosystems Institute (CNSI) will hold a conference entitled “The Future of Nanotechnology: A Legislative Summit.” The conference sponsors include California Assembly Member Mike Feuer (AD 42-D), Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research (OVCR), State Government Relations (SGR), and CNSI. Panelists include Lenny Rome, Ph.D.; Andre Nel, Ph.D., MD

On October 3, 2007, the California Department for Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) held a symposium on the potential hazards of nanoparticles in the environment. According to DTSC, exploring environmentally safe processes in nanotechnology manufacturing is a component of the California Green Chemistry Initiative.  Under the Initiative, a multi-agency state team is exploring a different approach to environmental protection — transitioning away from managing toxic chemicals at the end of the life-cycle, to reducing or eliminating their use altogether.  DTSC states that this new approach is similar to measures adopted by the European Union (EU) and the Canadian government to encourage greater manufacturer responsibility.
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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