EPA Considers How Best To Regulate Nanoscale Materials

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Courtesy of Bergeson & Campbell, P.C.

As the relentless pace of global investment in all things nano continues, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has jumped into the murky regulatory waters, trying to decide how best to manage nanotechnology’s risks and benefits.

In a May 10, 2005, Federal Register notice,1 EPA announced, in an understated way, its decision to convene a public meeting on “nanoscale materials.” The meeting notice represents the Agency's first public foray into harnessing some of nanotechnology’s promise within a regulatory framework created almost three decades ago with the enactment of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA).

This column explores some of the regulatory and science policy considerations implicit in EPA’s notice, with a view towards forecasting the shape of things to come.

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