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May 29, 2008

DEFRA Posts Sixth Quarterly Report on the Voluntary Reporting Scheme

Lynn L. Bergeson

On May 19, 2008, the Department for Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) posted its sixth quarterly report on the Voluntary Reporting Scheme (VRS) for engineered nanoscale materials. According to the report, DEFRA received no new submissions this quarter, and to date has received only nine submissions since the VRS’s launch in September 2006:  seven from industry, and two from academia. The report states that DEFRA, in partnership with the United Kingdom Technology Strategy Board, is funding a telephone survey of selected companies and researchers.  DEFRA intends the survey, to be undertaken between May and August 2008, to find out more about the nature of these companies/researchers’ activities in the field of nanotechnologies.  As part of this process, DEFRA will offer assistance to those wishing to submit data to the VRS, in the form of telephone advice or site visits.  All information collected as part of this process will be treated as confidential unless the data owner advises to the contrary.