Authors: L.L. Hodson, C.L. Geraci
Affilation: NIOSH, United States
Pages: 115 - 118
Keywords: prevention through design, sustainable, safety
Nanotechnology has the potential to provide great benefit to society, but it must be developed responsibly. This responsibility involves addressing any adverse human and environmental impacts of the technology associated with engineered nanomaterials. Workers are among the first people in any society to be exposed to the potential health hazards caused by the products of new technology, and their exposure to any new material is often greater than for the general population. Therefore, worker safety and health can be seen as the core of responsible development. Prevention through Design (PtD) is a comprehensive approach for addressing worker safety and health issues by “designing out” hazards and minimizing residual risks. The safe commercialization of nano products should focus on: efforts to develop safer nano molecules that have the same functionality; process containment and control, based on the considerations of risk of exposure to workers; and management system approaches for including occupational safety and health into the nanoparticle synthetic process, product development, and product manufacture.