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Last week, EPA unveiled two precedent-setting regulatory changes for nanomaterials. First, the agency will require registration under the federal pesticides law of products containing nanoscale silver that are designed to control microbes. EPA will not classify all nanosilver products as pesticides, the agency adds in a response to a 2008 petition from activist groups that are seeking stronger regulation of nanomaterials. Second, EPA separately proposed a onetime requirement for makers of nanoscale commercial chemicals currently on the market to notify the agency about all available health and safety data for their products. Under this Toxic Substances Control Act proposal, these manufacturers would also have to submit production volume, processing, use, exposure, and release information.
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