EPA leads the nation's environmental science, research, education and assessment efforts to protect human health and the environment.
EPA promotes the safe development, use, and disposal/recycling of products that contain manufactured nanoscale materials. Sustainability is a theme that runs through the EPA nanotechnology research program. Using green chemistry and life-cycle assessment approaches, EPA is investigating how nanomaterials behave in the environment, how nanomaterial properties may be modified or exposure controls implemented to minimize and manage potential risks from products containing nanomaterials. EPA’s research activities are coordinated across the U.S. Federal Government through the NNI and internationally within the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). Key links:
- EPA’s Nanomaterial Research Strategy (http://www.epa.gov/nanoscience);
- Environmental, Health, and Safety Research Needs for Engineered Nanoscale Materials (http://www.nano.gov/NNI_EHS_research_needs.pdf); and on the
- 2007 EPA Nanotechnology White Paper (http://www.epa.gov/nanoscience).
Since 2001, EPA has played a leading role in supporting research and setting research directions to develop environmental applications for nanotechnology as well as to understand the potential human health and environmental implications of nanotechnology. The agency has provided such leadership through its Science to Achieve Results (STAR) grant program and through contracts to small businesses under its Small Business Innovation Research program, both of which have developed a cadre of highly skilled researchers and engineers with expertise in the area of environmental nanotechnology. EPA’s own research laboratories are conducting targeted research to inform decisions related to nanotechnology and the environment.