moved for leave to introduce Bill C-494, An Act to amend the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999 (nanotechnology).
There is a need for public policy that is governed by the precautionary principle, and we need a proper balance between protecting Canadians from potential harmful consequences and allowing us potential benefits of nanotechnologies. The bill would fulfill that need for sound legislative guidance.
The proposed amendments to the act would help implement a national strategy to guide the development of nanotechnology. Nanotechnology is the application of science and engineering to the design and manipulation of materials at the atomic, molecular and macromolecular scale with the view of enhancing performance or quality.
The bill includes risk assessment procedures prior to nanomaterial or nanoproduct release into the marketplace, the environment or to Canadians. A public inventory of nanotechnology and nanomaterials in Canada would be established. The bill would complement regulatory initiatives underway in the E.U., Australia, the U.K. and the U.S.
Since 2005, Canadians and international scientific organizations have been calling for legislation as hundreds of new nanoproducts enter the global marketplace. Canada's New Democrats are acting by proposing this bill.
(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)