Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council and the European Economic and Social Committee - Regulatory aspects of nanomaterials [SEC(2008) 2036]

The present Communication reflects on the commitment of the European Commission to review EU legislation in relevant sectors in order to ensure that all applications and use of nanosciences and nanotechnologies must comply with the high level of public health, safety, consumers and workers protection, and environmental protection chosen by the Community.

It covers nanomaterials currently in production and/or placed on the market. In the absence of generally accepted definitions, the term nanomaterials is used in this Communication to cover commonly used terminology such as manufactured (or engineered) nano-sized and nanostructured nanomaterials. The Communication does not address nanomaterials or nanoparticles that occur naturally or are unintentionally produced, e.g. in combustion.

It follows the political framework established in the Commission's Communication “Nanosciences and nanotechnologies: an action plan for Europe 2005 – 2009” and the Communication “Towards a European Strategy for Nanotechnology”, in which the Commission states that R&D and technological progress need to be accompanied by scientific investigation and assessment of possible health or environmental risks associated with nanotechnology.

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