Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


Home > Press > Nanotechnology a potential boon for Canada

Nanotechnology research, development and use can be enhanced through regulation and policy which protects human health and our environment, says CIELAP

Nanotechnology a potential boon for Canada

Toronto, Canada | Posted on June 18th, 2007

The Canadian Institute of Environmental Law and Policy (CIELAP) has just released an important new document discussing a policy framework for nanotechnology in Canada. Nanotechnology is the ability to measure, see, manipulate and manufacture materials at the scale of between 1 and 100 nanometers (nm). One nanometer is a billionth of a meter, which is about a hundred thousand times smaller than the cross section width of a human hair, and a thousand times smaller than a red blood cell.

"The development and use of nanotechnology holds enormous potential for Canadian businesses," says Anne Mitchell, CIELAP Executive Director, "but only if a framework exists to encourage its safe development and use, protecting Canadians and our environment. We believe that early adoption of nanotechnology standards will make Canada more competitive in this growing field."

While most people are unaware of nanotechnology, it could be the single most important technological advance of this new century. In 2006 alone, $12.4 billion was invested in nanotechnology research and development worldwide, and over $50 billion worth of nano-enabled products were sold*.

What makes the technology so valuable is that materials at this scale can exhibit novel properties that are different from the same substance's properties at the macro or even micro scales. Colour, conductivity, reactivity, and a host of other properties alter in surprising and potentially useful ways.

Nanotechnology is currently used in hundreds of products, including consumer products such as clothing, cosmetics, bedding, jewelry, sporting goods, nutritional and personal care items, and it holds tremendous potential for breakthroughs in medicine, in the production of clean water and energy, and in computers and electronics.

While the environmental and health effects of nanomaterials are largely unknown, a number of studies have found that nanoscale particles are substantially more toxic and reactive biologically than larger particles of the same material.

In CIELAP's report, available at , author Susan Holtz describes twelve key elements which she says must be addressed in any Canadian policy framework for nanotechnology. Some of them include public education and engagement; science and research support; commercialization; social and economic benefits; consumer protection; and labeling of nanomaterials in consumer products.

"The policy challenges for nanotechnology are enormous, and are currently dominated by a lack of scientific information and basic policy tools, including definitions and metrology; a legal and regulatory framework; and structures and resources for public engagement," says Holtz.

Mitchell says the next step is to see what support there is for CIELAP's recommendations from governments, industry and civil society organizations that have an interest in this topic.


About Canadian Institute of Environmental Law and Policy (CIELAP)
Founded in 1970, the Canadian Institute for Environmental Law and Policy (CIELAP) is an independent environmental law and policy research and education organization.

For more information, please click here

Carolyn Webb
416-923-3529 ext 26
Anne Mitchell
cell: 416-577-8402.

Copyright © Canadian Institute of Environmental Law and Policy (CIELAP)

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press


Photonic “sintering” may create new solar, electronics manufacturing technologies December 1st, 2015

IU chemists craft molecule that self-assembles into flower-shaped crystalline patterns:'Tricarb' research laid foundation for university's new $1.2 million materials science grant from National Science Foundation December 1st, 2015

Researchers find new phase of carbon, make diamond at room temperature November 30th, 2015

Researchers from Deakin and Drexel develop super-absorbent material to soak up oil spills November 30th, 2015


CEA-Leti to Share Insights into Post-7-nanometer Technologies At Workshop Prior to IEDM in Washington, D.C.: Research Includes CMOS Device Architectures, New Materials and Computing System Paradigms December 1st, 2015

Nano-walkers take speedy leap forward with first rolling DNA-based motor: Fastest DNA motor holds potential for disease diagnostics December 1st, 2015

UTA researcher to build internal nanotechnology device to simplify blood sugar testing: Medical technologies December 1st, 2015

Graphene-Coated Wearable 'E-Textile' Can Alert Wearer To Presence Of Dangerous Gases December 1st, 2015

The latest news from around the world, FREE

  Premium Products
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More

Nanotechnology Now Featured Books


The Hunger Project

Car Brands
Buy website traffic