Nanotechnology is a growing field. It is currently being used in a large number of consumer and industrial products, as well. These products range from chemical fertilizers, to sunblock lotions. However, there is a distinct lack of awareness regarding the potential side effects of nanotechnology on the people who work in nanotechnology industries and those who consume products that involve nanoparticles.

Around the world, there is only limited legislation regarding the use of nanoparticles. Depsite the fact that nanoparticles are recognized as products with “special properties”, no attempt is being made to bring about any international or centralized legislation to control the production of the industry. As a result of this, very little work is done to identify and isolate the risks of using nanoparticles in consumer and industrial products as well.

Nanoparticles can have a long term impact on the human body and the environment, which is why there is a need for immediate and effective legislation. Industries using nanoparticles should be legally required to research into the health and environmental hazards of the particles. They should be required to monito the risks, and be accountable for any wrongful distribution of nanoparticle-filled product as well. These industries should alsobe compelled to publicly announce the results and the data retrieved from their researches. This would create consumer awareness, and it would also help the industry in it’s long term growth strategies.  

However, the path towards industrial regulation of nanoparticles is not going to be easy. Many industries actively lobby for extensive use of nanotechnology in their products, for it enhances certain properties of their products, even if they have not done sufficient research into the side effects. This hurdle has to be overcome so that the nanotechnology industry can grow in a sustainable and responsible fashion.



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