EPA proposes registration requirements for nano materials

By Simon Pitman contact

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Chemical substance, Nanomaterials

EPA proposes registration requirements for nano materials
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is mulling a one-time reporting and recordkeeping requirement on nano chemical substances that is likely to include skin and sun care products.

“Nanotechnology holds great promise for improving products, from TVs and vehicles to batteries and solar panels,”​ said Jim Jones, EPA’s Assistant Administrator for Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention.

“We want to continue to facilitate the trend toward this important technology. Today’s action will ensure that EPA also has information on nano-sized versions of chemicals that are already in the marketplace.”

Collection of health and safety data

As it stands, EPA reviews new chemical substances that are manufactured or processed as nanomaterials prior to introduction to the marketplace, to ensure they are not hazardous.

Building on that position, EPA is proposing to use the authority it is given by the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) to collect health and safety information on chemicals in the marketplace that are manufactured or processed as nanoscale materials.

The proposal recommends one time reporting from any company that manufactures or processes chemical substances as nanoscale materials and makes them available in the U.S. marketplace.

With respects to the cosmetics industry, nano materials have most commonly appeared in sun care products, with the inclusion of nanoscale zinc oxide, but also in a number of formulations for anti-aging and nail care products, as well as hair dyes.

The EPA is looking for this data:

· Specific information, including specific chemical identity
· Production volume
· Methods of manufacture; processing, use, exposure, and release information
· Available health and safety data.

The proposal for the reporting process focuses on the fact that nanoscale materials can have special properties, including greater strength and lighter weight, which can cause them to behave differently to their full-sized counterparts.

The reporting process is not aiming to conclude adverse effects to health or the environment, rather to use the information gathered to determine if further action is necessary under the TSCA, the EPA states.

The EPA is currently inviting public comment on the proposal, which is open during the course of the next 90 days, with additional information on the subject available by clicking here​.

Related topics: Regulation & Safety

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