Nanomaterials - Three new OECD reports address workplace issues

The rapid growth of nanotechnology is leading to the development of new
materials, devices, and processes that lie far beyond our current understanding
of environmental and human impact. Occupational health risks associated with
manufacturing and using nanomaterials are not yet clearly understood. Many
nanomaterials and devices are formed from nanometer-scale particles
(nanoparticles) that are initially produced as aerosols or colloidal
suspensions. Exposure to these materials during manufacturing and use may occur
through inhalation, dermal contact, and ingestion. Minimal information is
currently available on dominant exposure routes, potential exposure levels, and
material toxicity. What information does exist comes primarily from the study
of ultrafine particles (typically defined as particles smaller than 100

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has published
three new reports adressing these issues:

  • Report of an OECD Workshop on Exposure Assessment and Exposure Mitigation:
    Manufactured Nanomaterials

  • Comparison of Guidance on Selection of Skin Protective Equipment and
    Respirators for Use in the Workplace: Manufactured Nanomaterials

  • Emission Assessment for Identification of Sources and Release of Airborne
    Manufactured Nanomaterials in the Workplace: Compilation of Existing Guidance.

More information - Source: European Agency for Safety and Health at Work