EPA announced Jan. 28 the launch of its Nanoscale Materials Stewardship Program (NMSP) to determine both the benefits and human health and environmental risks of nanoscale chemical products.
The program, which will complement and support EPA's new and existing chemical programs under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), calls on manufacturers, importers, processors and users of engineered nanoscale materials to report key information about these materials to EPA within six months. The agency will evaluate the information to help ensure the safe manufacture and use of nanoscale products.
Engineered nanoscale materials range in size from 1-100 nanometers (nm) and may have very different properties from the same materials at a larger scale.
“This program will help strengthen the scientific understanding of nanoscale materials and allow the EPA to more quickly assemble the information needed to ensure appropriate oversight of the products of this promising technology,” said Jim Gulliford, EPA’s assistant administrator for prevention, pesticides and toxic substances. “Participation in this program can help assure the responsible development, use and acceptance of these materials in the marketplace.”
According to EPA, NMSP includes, but is not limited to, existing chemical nanoscale materials manufactured or imported for commercial purposes as defined by TSCA. EPA will work with industry and users of nanoscale materials to develop test data to provide a scientific basis for assessing the hazards, exposures and risks of nanoscale products.
More information on NMSP can be found at http://epa.gov/oppt/nano/stewardship.htm.