Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Panel Blasts Federal Nanotechnology Risk Research Strategy

Date:
December 10, 2008
Source:
Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies
Summary:
A National Research Council committee has issued a highly critical report describing serious shortfalls in the Bush administration's strategy to better understand the environment, health and safety risks of nanotechnology and to effectively manage those potential risks.

A National Research Council (NRC) committee has issued a highly critical report describing serious shortfalls in the Bush administration’s strategy to better understand the environment, health and safety (EHS) risks of nanotechnology and to effectively manage those potential risks.

The report, Review of the Federal Strategy for Nanotechnology-Related Environmental, Health and Safety Research, calls for a significantly revamped national strategic plan that will minimize potential risks so that innovation will flourish and society will reap nanotechnology’s benefits.

Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies (PEN) Director David Rejeski maintains the “lessons learned” in the NRC report offer a silver lining that will help guide the administration of President-elect Barack Obama.

“It is disappointing that the Bush administration did not listen to PEN experts – and repeated calls from nanotech industry and congressional leaders from both parties – for an improved and revamped risk research plan for nanotechnology. Their delay has hurt investor and consumer confidence. It has gambled with public health and safety. It has jeopardized the $14 billion investment governments and private industry have made in this technology and its great promise for huge advancements in health care, energy and manufacturing. But I am encouraged that the NRC assessment will provide a roadmap for the next administration to make up for this lost time. It’s time to get the job done and to get it done right,” says Rejeski.

The risk research plan developed under the National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI) has been widely criticized by consumer groups, chemical industry representatives and congressional lawmakers from both major parties as lacking a clear vision and the resources necessary to improve understanding of the potential risks posed by nanomaterials.

The new NRC report, written by a highly regarded team of top U.S. experts, echoes PEN experts’ statements, analysis and research since 2005. PEN’s work has extensively documented the need for a greatly improved government risk research strategy, more transparency and priority-setting in federal risk research funding, and a new mechanism for coordinating research.

The NRC document states that the NNI strategy “contains conflicting statements about the use of fiscal year 2006 research projects to evaluate research needs.”

PEN experts have repeatedly stated that the risk-relevant research investment by the federal government was far less than the figures cited by the Bush administration. Most recently, PEN staff also developed federal risk-research funding options for moving forward.

The new NRC report also echoes PEN’s calls for an improved mechanism for conducting research. As many as 18 federal agencies — including the Defense Department, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Food and Drug Administration — are under the umbrella of the NNI’s environment and health implications working group, making coordinating research a challenging task.

PEN testimony before the House Committee on Science and Technology in both 2007 and 2008 provided detailed recommendations for a new mechanism for organizing federal nanotechnology research that would improve coordination among agencies. The principal recommendation is to replace the current bottom-up collection of individual agency research agendas and budgets with a top-down, highly focused and fully-funded strategy that addresses the risk research priorities of a rapidly commercializing new technology.

“The NRC report explicitly says that the federal plan ‘does not have the essential elements of a research strategy,’” Rejeski says. “That is – if nothing else – a clear sign that it is time for a new start.”

Copies of the Review Of The Federal Strategy For Nanotechnology-related Environmental, Health, And Safety Research can be purchased from the National Academies Press.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies. "Panel Blasts Federal Nanotechnology Risk Research Strategy." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 December 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081210103045.htm>.
Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies. (2008, December 10). Panel Blasts Federal Nanotechnology Risk Research Strategy. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081210103045.htm
Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies. "Panel Blasts Federal Nanotechnology Risk Research Strategy." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081210103045.htm (accessed August 1, 2014).

Share This




More Matter & Energy News

Friday, August 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways

Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways

AP (July 30, 2014) British officials said on Wednesday that driverless cars will be tested on roads in as many as three cities in a trial program set to begin in January. Officials said the tests will last up to three years. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
7 Ways to Use Toothpaste: Howdini Hacks

7 Ways to Use Toothpaste: Howdini Hacks

Howdini (July 30, 2014) Fresh breath and clean teeth are great, but have you ever thought, "my toothpaste could be doing more". Well, it can! Lots of things! Howdini has 7 new uses for this household staple. Video provided by Howdini
Powered by NewsLook.com
Amid Drought, UCLA Sees Only Water

Amid Drought, UCLA Sees Only Water

AP (July 30, 2014) A ruptured 93-year-old water main left the UCLA campus awash in 8 million gallons of water in the middle of California's worst drought in decades. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow

Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow

AP (July 30, 2014) Smartphone powered paper airplane that was popular on crowdfunding website KickStarter makes its debut at Wisconsin airshow (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins