NANOTECHNOLOGY: UNDERSTANDING POTENTIAL RISKS AND THE ADOPTION OF PROACTIVE PARADIGM. 15 th March 2010, Venue: WRC offices - Pula boardroom, Pretoria, South Africa. Water Research Commission Media Breakfast: Nanotechnology.
15th March 2010, Venue: WRC offices - Pula boardroom, Pretoria, South Africa
Water Research Commission Media Breakfast: Nanotechnology
“A man would do nothing if he waited until he could do it so well that no one would find fault with what he had done.” Cardinal Newman
2010 Soccer World Cup: South Africa VIVA! it so well that no one would find fault with what he had done.”
88 Days To Go
1,77 x 10-8 fold
Nanoparticle, 4 nm
Training of future leaders in nanotechnology must concisely align in addressing part or all of the challenges
Why Risk Assessment Now for Engineered Nanomaterials Materials (ENMs)?
Intentional sources (anthropogenic) Materials (ENMs)?
Unintentional sources (natural and anthropogenic)
χNANOMATERIALS OF FOCI
20-90% atoms on surface, most
dominant effects < 30 nm
Energy band increases with decrease in diameter (< 6 nm effects profound)
Aspects of serious concerns
Grieger et al, 2010:Redefining risk research priorities for nanomaterials,
J Nanoparticle Research (2010) 12:383–392
Maynard et al., 2006. Safe Handling of Nanomaterials. Nature 444 (11):267–269.
Web link: http://intraweb.csir.co.za/news/inthenews/2009/TheStar_Nanotech.pdf
Risk communication is critical in enabling public engagement with new technologies (balancing of technology benefits versus risks)
Forms the cornerstone of opinion-forming process on the public acceptance/debate regarding a given technology – has a lasting mark on the development of technologies and their applications
Should reflect current and dynamic social, scientific, and political imperatives
For nanotechnologies – its promises and potential public fears needs to be taken into account, and addressed expeditiously
Requires an on-going debates among different stakeholders to ascertain opportunities and risks (government, industry and the public)
But who remains the most suitable to communicate technology risks?