Nanotechnology promises to bring significant changes to many products and industries. Materials that are benign at the normal scale may present health issues at the nanoscale. Today, regulation of nanomaterials is just beginning to take shape, and environmental health and safety issues are now dominating nanotech literature, causing uncertainty for manufacturers, insurers, the legal community and the public alike. Currently, the biggest regulatory concerns are worker exposures to potentially hazardous materials and releases of nanomaterials into the environment through wastewater or other forms of disposal. In the interest of environmental safety, the EPA is applying rules under the Toxic Substance Control Act to nanomaterials. Certain environmental groups argue that, by definition, the nanoscale version of a chemical is "new" in that it potentially has new chemical characteristics. While much is made about the uncertain state of regulation of nanomaterials, many existing workplace and environmental regulations apply and need to be complied with.
THINKING SMALL Gregory E King Risk Management; Apr 2010; 57, 3; Docstoc pg. 48 Reproduced with permission of t
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