Nanotechnology is the manufacture and manipulation of materials that are approximately 1 to 100 nanometers in size. Over 1,000 products that use nanomaterials are already on the market, including fabrics, sporting goods, and cosmetics.
The Environmental Law Institute’s Nanotechnology Program responds to the urgent need to develop an effective environmental, health, and safety governance structure for nanotechnologies. Nanomaterials are being emitted into the air, discharged into the water, and disposed of on land with limited federal or state regulation or understanding of the possible effects on human health and the environment.
Core areas of research needed to establish a foundation for a governance structure include:
- A comprehensive analysis of existing legal authorities and development of a regulatory and oversight blueprint;
- An assessment of alternative governance approaches;
- Development of public information and engagement tools and mechanisms; and
- An examination of management and implementation issues and strategies.
The Nanotechnology Program is led by Linda Breggin.