For a freedom loving city, Berkeley likes to lay down the rules pretty thick. The town is stepping up to be the first city in America to regulate nanotechnology:
The City Council is expected Tuesday to amend its hazardous materials law to compel researchers and manufacturers to report what nanotechnology materials they are working with and how they are handling the tiny particles.
“The ordinance is quite important, and I think it will be given worldwide attention,” said David Rejeski, director of the Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies, which is funded by the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars and the Pew Charitable Trusts. “This is a new industry, and there is a lack of federal and state regulations.”
There are no known businesses within Berkeley city limits working directly with nanomaterials and the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, which launched an ambitious nanotechnology department in March, is exempt from local regulations because it is part of the federal Department of Energy.
City officials said the new regulation is mostly aimed at monitoring nanotechnology startups and small businesses, rather than the national lab’s efforts.
It seems a little strange that these rules, as of now, would apply to nobody. Well, who cares, let’s go get some organic coffee!
You can read the article here…