Navigation Links
US government delays nanotechnology safety measures
Date:10/31/2007

WASHINGTONWant to buy a bag of carbon nanotubesin quantities from a few grams to hundreds of kilograms (100 kilograms = approximately 220 pounds)? With a credit card and Internet access, you can. But is the U.S. government doing enough to ensure the safety of these materials and the hundreds of other nanotechnology commercial and consumer products currently on the market?

The answer is a resounding no, says Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies chief scientist Andrew Maynard. The materials safety data sheet for carbon nanotubeswhich provides workers and safety personnel with information on proper handling procedurestreats these substances as graphite, the material used in pencils. But carbon nanotubes are as similar to pencil lead as the soot on my barbeque grill at home is to diamonds.

According to Maynard, This is just one example of the yawning knowledge gap between the nanomaterials entering commerce now and their safety. And this uncertainty over how to develop nanotechnologies safely, hamstrings regulators, hinders nanobusiness, and confuses consumers.

Dr. Maynards remarks are from his testimony today at a hearing held by U.S. Congresss House Science Committee. A copy of his written statement is available online at www.nanotechproject.org.

According to Maynard, filling this knowledge gap will not be easy, but it is essential and must be done quickly if nanotechnology is to succeed. He recommends the following necessary steps:

  • Establish a clear, top-down risk research strategy with the resources required to ensure its implementation;
  • Create a new federal advisory committee to allow transparent input and review from industry, scientists, labor groups, nongovernmental organizations and other stakeholders;
  • Allocate approximately 10 percent of the U.S. governments nanotechnology research and development budget to goal-oriented nanotechnology environment, health, and safety researcha minimum of $50 million annually for research directly tied to oversight and regulatory needs and an estimated $95 million per year for exploratory research that is conducted within the scope of a federal strategic research program; (Previous analysis by Maynard shows that in 2005 the U.S. government spent approximately $11 million on highly relevant risk research.)
  • Launch a public-private research partnership program, with cost-sharing between industry and government, to address immediate and critical research questions on effective oversight; and
  • Appoint a top-level government leader responsible for the action needed to address the environment, health and safety challenges of nanotechnology.

There is no doubt that nanotechnology has the potential to make the world a better place and that members of the National Nanotechnology Initiative have great intentions to do the right thing. But given what is at stake herethe quality of our environment, the future vitality of the American economy, and the health of workers and consumersgood intentions are not enough, said Maynard.


'/>"/>

Contact: Sharon McCarter
sharon.mccarter@wilsoncenter.org
202-691-4016
Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Canadas new government invests $200M in the fight against the mountain pine beetle
2. Noise And Delays Explain Why Some Genes Oscillate In Activity
3. Sexual reproduction delays aging in a mammalian species
4. Resveratrol prolongs lifespan and delays onset of aging-related traits in a short-lived vertebrate
5. Revolutionary nanotechnology illuminates brain cells at work
6. Nanotechnology to provide portable genetic risk detection
7. Nanotechnology may find disease before it starts
8. Nanotechnology being used to improve biocompatibility of human prosthetics and implants
9. Silver bullet: UGA researchers use laser, nanotechnology to rapidly detect viruses
10. Nanotechnology propels advances in regenerative medicine research
11. New nanotechnology able to examine single molecules, aiding in determining gene expression
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/9/2016)... May 9, 2016 Elevay is ... to expanding freedom for high net worth professionals seeking ... today,s globally connected world, there is still no substitute ... ever duplicate sealing your deal with a firm handshake. ... by taking advantage of citizenship via investment programs like ...
(Date:4/26/2016)... LONDON , April 26, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... Systems, a product subsidiary of Infosys (NYSE: ... partnership to integrate the Onegini mobile security platform ... http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20151104/283829LOGO ) The integration ... security to access and transact across channels. Using ...
(Date:4/15/2016)... 2016 Research and Markets has ... Market 2016-2020,"  report to their offering.  , ... ,The global gait biometrics market is expected to ... period 2016-2020. Gait analysis generates multiple ... used to compute factors that are not or ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital ... Sports Association to serve as their official health ... Methodist Willowbrook will provide sponsorship support, athletic training ... association coaches, volunteers, athletes and families. ... Sports Association and to bring Houston Methodist quality ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... -- The Biodesign Challenge (BDC), a university competition that asks ... systems and biotechnology, announced its winning teams at the ... York City . The teams, chosen ... MoMA,s Celeste Bartos Theater during the daylong summit. Keynote ... of architecture and design, and Suzanne Lee , ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... ... STACS DNA Inc., the sample tracking software company, today announced that Dr. Hays ... DNA as a Field Application Specialist. , “I am thrilled that Dr. Young ... DNA. “In further expanding our capacity as a scientific integrator, Hays brings a wealth ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Calif. , June 23, 2016  Blueprint Bio, ... biological discoveries to the medical community, has closed its ... Matthew Nunez . "We have received ... with the capital we need to meet our current ... essentially provide us the runway to complete validation on ...
Breaking Biology Technology: