On November 8, 2007, the Executive Office of the President issued a memorandum entitled "Principles of Nanotechnology Environmental, Health, and Safety Oversight." The memorandum was co-signed by the President’s Council on Environmental Quality and Office of Science and Technology Policy, and was directed to EPA, FDA, OSHA, NIOSH, and other federal agencies conducting nanotechnology research and development.
In keeping with prior Administration statements, the memorandum takes the position that "existing statutory authorities are adequate to address oversight of nanotechnology and its applications." The document suggests new regulatory approaches may be developed as new scientific information becomes available. In the meantime, the federal government "should use standard oversight approaches," and "should strive to reach an appropriate level of consistency . . . across the government."
The memorandum also suggests adequate nano related EHS information should be developed, "to the extent practicable and protecting confidential information," and the federal government should "proactively promote international cooperation" on EHS research.
Unsurprisingly, Risk Policy Report, Nov. 20, 2007, Vol. 14, No. 47, reports that "[w]hile industry sources were generally pleased with the language in the memo, environmentalists and think tank officials were widely opposed to the memo, saying that current statutes are in adequate for the unique aspects of nanomaterials and that standard risk assessment practices will not suffice."