OECD update: Current developments on the safety of manufactured nanomaterials

(Nanowerk News) In each meeting of the Working Party on Manufactured Nanomaterials (WPMN), the delegations have an opportunity to provide their developments on the safety of manufactured nanomaterials, so called "Tour de Table."
This document – "Current developments on the safety of manufactured nanomaterials - Tour de Table" (pdf) – compiles information provided by member countries and other delegations on current developments on the safety of manufactured nanomaterials in their countries or organisations. There are also written reports on current activities related to nanotechnologies/ nanomaterials in other International Organisations including the International Organisation for Standardisation and United Nations Institute for Training and Research.
This is intended to provide delegations and other stakeholders with a "snapshot" of information on activities related to manufactured nanomaterials, as well as other activities on nanotechnologies, at the national and international level. This "snapshot" was current at the time of the 9th meeting of the WPMN (December 2011).
The Working Party on Manufactured Nanomaterials1 was established in 2006 to help member countries efficiently and effectively address the safety challenges of nanomaterials. OECD has a wealth of experience in developing methods for the safety testing and assessment of chemical products.
The Working Party brings together more than 100 experts from governments and other stakeholders from: a) OECD Countries; b) non-member economies such as China, the Russian Federation, Singapore, South Africa, and Thailand; and c) observers and invited experts from UNITAR, FAO, WHO, ISO, BIAC2, TUAC3, and environmental NGOs.
Although OECD member countries appreciate the many potential benefits from the use of nanomaterials, they wished to engage, at an early stage, in addressing the possible safety implications at the same time as research on new applications are being undertaken.
The Working Party is implementing its work through specific projects to further develop appropriate methods and strategies to help ensure human health and environmental safety:
  • OECD Database on Manufactured Nanomaterials to Inform and Analyse EHS Research Activities;
  • Safety Testing of a Representative Set of Manufactured Nanomaterials;
  • Manufactured Nanomaterials and Test Guidelines;
  • Co-operation on Voluntary Schemes and Regulatory Programmes;
  • Co-operation on Risk Assessment;
  • The role of Alternative Methods in Nanotoxicology;
  • Exposure Measurement and Exposure Mitigation; and
  • Environmentally Sustainable Use of Manufactured Nanomaterials
  • Each project is being managed by a steering group, which comprises members of the WPMN, with support from the Secretariat. Each steering group implements its respective "operational plans", each with their specific objectives and timelines. The results of each project are then evaluated and endorsed by the entire WPMN.
    Source: OECD