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Environmental Regulation of Nanotechnology: Avoiding Big Mistakes For Small Machines
Volume 1, Issue 3

Scott Segal, Bracewell & Patterson

The field of nanotechnology is poised for rapid expansion, and with that expansion will come the need for an effective but pragmatic regulatory regime to deal with issues related to health and the environment. In this article, lawyer Scott Segal analyzes environmental regulation of nanotechnology. He first explains how the current regulatory structure can be employed to deal with nanomaterials as parts of products or industrial processes. He then argues that, in the near future, new ways of thinking will be needed to deal with the converging nature of nanotechnology. Failure to effectively regulate nanoscale materials, devices, and systems will result neither in optimal safety nor optimal benefits of development.

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