InsideEPA reported earlier today that Wisconsin State Assembly Representative Terese Berceau has asked three Wisconsin agencies to institute a nanoscale materials registry with several proposed reporting requirements. In her December 3, 2007 letter to the Wisconsin Departments of Natural Resources; Health and Family Services; and Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, the Madison-based representative suggested a system requiring the reporting of:
- Type, form, and amount of nanoscale materials being produced by reporting entities;
- Most current environmental monitoring methods for such materials;
- Toxicological properties of such materials;
- Best methodology for monitoring, containing, handling, transporting, and disposing of such materials in/from the workplace; and
- Information regarding how the entities intend to prevent unintended releases and mitigate same.
While maintaining nanoscale material "measurement" and "accountability" are key public concerns, Berceau leaves it up to the various departments to determine whether the registry should be created by "rule or legislation." Berceau also notes any registry should protect potential confidential business information submitted in the process.
Regular readers may recall Berkeley, California passed a local regulation amending its hazardous materials ordinance to include nanoscale materials in December 2006. You can see our prior coverage of the Berkeley ordinance here, here, here, here, and here. You can also find our Nature Nanotechnology article on the subject here. We also reported on Cambridge, Massachusetts’ potential municipal regulation of engineered nanoscale materials here, here, here, and here and are on the City’s advisory panel for the process.