US NIOSH (National Institute of Occupational Health and Safety) nano consultation mystery

I am mystified by the NIOSH public consultation on its nanotechnology strategic plan (Approaches to Safe Nanotechnology; Managing the Health and Safety Concerns Associated with Engineered Nanomaterials).

Here are the clues in the order in which I found them:

(a) An April 14, 2011 posting on (Apparently these people are lawyers so my attempt to cut and paste the first paragraph of their posting resulted in a notice that I don’t have permission. I gather the text these lawyers have provided about the announcement and NIOSH’s history regarding its nanotechnology plans is considered proprietary. Accordingly, I’ve removed the paragraph and, in an excess of caution, I have removed the link I would have provided to their site. I trust it’s acceptable to refer to the website by name.) According to this posting, NIOSH announced their nanotechnology public consultation on March 7, 2011. (Note: This consultation is separate from the NIOSH consultation on carbon nanotubes and nanofibers mentioned in my Dec. 9, 2010 posting.)

(b) It took me a while to get to the notice as I had to click down a couple levels into the NIOSH site to find the March 7, 2011 notice of the public consultation on the US Federal Register. From the notice,

SUMMARY: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) seeks comment on the types of hazard identification and risk management research that should be considered for updating the NIOSH 2009 nanotechnology strategic plan.
Public Comment Period: Comments must be received by April 15, 2011.

It seems like a relatively short period to allow for responses but, more puzzlingly, the notice doesn’t seem to have been well publicized. I can’t find mention of it on the Nanowerk website (my usual source for this kind of thing), the University of Michigan’s Risk Science Blog, or on Andrew Maynard’s 2020 Science Blog. (Note: Andrew is also involved with the Risk Science Blog but he is not its sole author.)

(c) I found the public consultation docket about what is now referred to as the NRTC Strategic Plan on the NIOSH website and, as they promise, the responses to the consultation are available for viewing. All two of them, that is.

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