DuPont Nanotech Project: Government Influence

In addition to working directly with companies to advance the use of the Framework, we worked through various government and intergovernmental organizations to promote the Framework’s principles and practices.

  • U.S. EPA: We communicated with the US EPA throughout the project to maximize the Framework’s value as input (and encouragement) for EPA to develop a regulatory program for nanomaterial risk evaluation and management. Since the Framework’s launch, EPA has taken a few halting steps towards improving oversight of nanomaterials, and we continue to advocate for increased testing and risk research as well as tighter regulation of nanomaterials. We hope that the Framework has demonstrated the viability of a rigorous risk management protocol for the corporate sector.
  • U.S. DOE and U.S. DoD: The US Department of Energy (DOE) and Department of Defense (DoD) are two of the world’s largest researchers, developers and funders of nanotechnology. Both showed significant interest in the Nano Risk Framework. DoD invited EDF to brief their emerging contaminants workgroup on the Framework and to present to a much larger audience of defense contractors at the Joint Services Environmental Management conference. DOE invited EDF to present the Framework at a nano safety conference for DOE staff and contractors, including the authors of DOE’s nano safety guidance (which is mandatory for all DOE facilities and contractors).
  • OECD: The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), which represents the major developed economies of the world, has a number of workgroups to develop guidelines and conduct research on nanomaterial risks. Staff from EDF and DuPont participated in some of these work groups. The information sets for OECD’s nanomaterials testing program were informed by the “base sets” included in the Nano Risk Framework.
  • ISO: The International Standards Organization (ISO) is a voluntary organization with representatives from all over the world, focused on standardizing industrial processes and products – including processes for health, safety, and environmental stewardship. With encouragement from GE, Intel and the US National Institute of Standards and Technology, the U.S. delegation to the ISO’s Technical Committee on Nanotechnology Standards submitted the Nano Risk Framework as the basis for an ISO Technical Report on Nanomaterial Risk Evaluation. This process is ongoing, but at this stage, it appears that the process will result in an internationally endorsed technical report based on EDF and DuPont’s Nano Risk Framework, updated with the current science and reflecting input from across the globe.


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