March 18, 2004
Looking at Nanotechnology
Industrial pollution is easy to see, and so are its effects. But what happens when the machines are microscopic, the products are smaller, and the emissions are smaller still? Nanotechnology products are already in use in cosmetics, materials, and electronic devices. Nanotech manufacturing is on the near horizon. Are our environmental laws up to the task?
On March 18, 2004, Lynn Bergeson (Partner, Bergeson Campbell P.C.), co-author of the article “Reading the Small Print” in the March/April issue of The Environmental Forum, and David Rejeski (Director, Foresight and Governance Project, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars), author of the March/April The Environmental Forum article, “The Next Small Thing,” discussed nanotechnology and its implications for environmental law. Peter Rooney (Deputy Chief of Staff, House Science Committee) provided background information on The 21st Century Nanotechnology Research and Development Act. The panelists spoke about the current and potential applications for nanotechnology, its present and future regulation, and ways in which nanotechnology can be harnessed for environmental improvement.