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Serving Sri Lanka

This web log is a news and views blog. The primary aim is to provide an avenue for the expression and collection of ideas on sustainable, fair, and just, grassroot level development. Some of the topics that the blog will specifically address are: poverty reduction, rural development, educational issues, social empowerment, post-Tsunami relief and reconstruction, livelihood development, environmental conservation and bio-diversity. 

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Getting Nanotech Right: A New Report on Government Oversight of Nanotechnology

Project On Emerging Nanotechnologies: Getting Nanotech Right: A New Report on Government Oversight of Nanotechnology: "In October 2005, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved the manufacture of a new type of carbon nanotube under the ``low release and exposure exemption'' of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). It's the first time the agency approved a new chemical specifically identified as being ``nano.''
All major government environmental, health and safety regulations, like TSCA, were designed before the emergence of nanotechnology -- the ability to measure, see, manipulate, and manufacture things at an atomic and molecular scale, usually between 1 and 100 nanometers. A nanometer is one billionth of a meter; a human hair is roughly 100,000 nanometers wide.
In a nano marketplace, are existing oversight mechanisms adequate or do they need to be reassessed and changed? Does it make sense to consider a new law? Does government have the necessary human and financial resources to anticipate and manage the possible health and environmental implications of nanotechnology? Are there incentives to speed nanotechnology applications for environmentally beneficial uses? Davies' report examines these and other questions.
Download the full report
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