U.K. commission on nano
This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet
There is no evidence of environmental or health risks from nanomaterials, and thus no need to ban nanotechnology, the U.K.'s Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution says in a Nov. 12 report. The advisory panel calls for more testing on nanoparticles' functionality, a research program and government flexibility to address nanotechnology and other nascent fields. RCEP Chairman John Lawton calls for extending the coverage of the European Union's REACH chemical regulation to nanomaterials, as "the rate of innovation in this sector far outstrips our capacity to respond to the risks." The European Commission has advised EU members not to research nanoparticles in food and personal care items until more risk assessments are completed (1"The Tan Sheet" Oct. 20, 2008, In Brief)
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The European Food Safety Authority's Scientific Committee opens for comment Oct. 17 a draft scientific opinion on the potential risks of nanotechnologies for food. The opinion, requested by the European Commission to help develop appropriate legislation, says that established risk assessment approaches apply to nanoscience, though "it is generally not possible to extrapolate the potential toxicity of [engineered nanomaterials] from information on dissolved or macroscale chemicals." EFSA will accept comments until Dec. 1 at 1www.efsa.europa.eu/. The EC advised European Union members to avoid clinical research on nanoparticles in food and personal care products until it learns more about their biological and environmental effects (2"The Tan Sheet" Feb. 25, 2008, p. 12)
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