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Posted: May 12, 2009

OECD conference on potential environmental benefits of nanotechnology

(Nanowerk News) The OECD's Working Party on Manufactured Nanomaterials (ENV) and Working Party on Nanotechnology (STI) are organizing a "Conference on Potential Environmental Benefits of Nanotechnology: Fostering Safe Innovation-Led Growth" at the OECD Conference Centre in Paris, France, on July 15-17, 2009.
Background
Nanotechnology is an emerging technology which could significantly contribute to raising living standards and improving the quality of life. It has already been applied in many products from energy efficiency, to healthcare, to environmental protection, and to information and communication technologies. Many more applications are expected in the future. Ways of maximizing the benefits of nanotechnology, along with ensuring human health and environmental safety with regard to nanomaterials, is becoming an important topic for discussion, a new source of economic growth and a potential “win-win” opportunity for both the environment and the economy. In this respect, this conference will significantly contribute to accelerating OECD’s current efforts for fostering “green” and innovation-led growth.
Objective and Scope
The conference will cover both the opportunities and the challenges of the use of nanotechnologies for potential environmental benefit. The aim is to learn from international expertise and to identify ways in which to improve in a timely manner policies withthe potential to enhance both short- and long-term economic growth.
The conference will provide an opportunity for governments, academia and industry to consider the state-of-the-art of nanotechnologies, their potential to bring environmental benefits and any potential human health and environmental safety concerns at the same time.
In particular, the conference will address sustainability and life cycle aspects in a variety of sectors in which nanotechnology has the potential to give rise to environmental benefits. Thus, the conference will explore the environmental profiles of emerging nanoscale innovation with the goal of encouraging development of technologies that can result in environmental gain while addressing unintended consequences.
The topics to be addressed will fall into four key areas:
  • Pollution Reduction;
  • Cleaner production;
  • Other benefits including environmental remediation; and
  • Societal drivers such as policy innovations, and business/NGO leadership.
  • Key areas for case studies will include:
  • Energy generation, storage and conservation
  • Catalysis;
  • Cleaner production;
  • Water treatment and purification;
  • Remediation;
  • Environmental monitoring; and
  • Green chemistry – synthesis and processing of chemicals.
  • Program
    The conference will consist of;
  • Keynote presentation(s) by authoritative speaker(s) on the topics
  • Plenary sessions
  • Parallel sessions
  • Review of findings and policy-related conclusions
  • There will be a plenary sessions on Societal Drivers and Life Cycle Thinking and three parallel sessions on: 1) pollution reduction; 2) cleaner production; and 3) other environmental benefits. Each session will be structured to explore and discuss the pre-eminent perspectives within each field in order to address:
  • State-of-art technologies;
  • Potential environmental benefits;
  • Potential human health and environmental safety concerns and issues; and
  • A framework and policies to evaluate and address these factors together.
  • Registration: by 30 June 2009
    Attendance at this conference is by invitation only.
    Member countries’ nominations (including the European Commission), BIAC and TUAC should be sent directly to your respective OECD Permanent Delegations in Paris, who have the full responsibility for registering participants for the event.
    Other potential nominations from non-member economies, Accession and Enhanced Engagement Partners, observer countries, IGOs and NGOs should be sent to the OECD Secretariat at NANOreg@oecd.org
    For registration, please provide your permanent delegation or the OECD Secretariat with the following information, as a minimum: (1) Name; (2) Title; (3) Organisation/unit; (4) Complete mailing (street, postal) address; (5) Email address; (6) Telephone number; and (7) Fax number
    Source: OECD