etc group on Nano geopolitics

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etc group on Nano geopolitics

  1. 1. “Nanomaterials exemplify the kind of challenge for which attention to closing gaps in knowledge and regulation is necessary but insufficient. Effective governance will mean looking beyond traditional regulation for other, more imaginative solutions, often involving a wider range of actors and institutions than has been customary in the past…Ultimately however, many of the questions raised…extend beyond the (important) issues of risk and risk management to questions about the direction, application and control of innovation.” – The UK’s Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution (RCEP), Novel Materials in the Environment: The Case of Nanotechnology, November 2008. (In July 2010, the UK’s Environment Secretary Caroline Spelman announced she was abolishing the RCEP as part of a deficit reduction effort.) About the cover From Georges Seurat’s ‘Bathers at Asnières’ (National Gallery, London) painted in 1884 (as shown here). Against a backdrop of smokestacks spewing industrial pollution, Seurat’s anonymous workers from a suburb of Paris relax along and in the River Seine. In Shtig’s adaptation for our cover, the scene of workers at leisure is made ominous by nanotech’s new form of industrial pollution, visible only by its effects on the environment and human health. Acknowledgements ETC Group owes a tremendous debt of gratitude to Stephanie Howard, whose careful, original and comprehensive research forms the basis of this report. We have also benefitted from discussions that took place We are extremely grateful to all of the Nano-hazard symbol (reproduced on during a series of meetings organized to participants. ETC Group gratefully this report’s cover) by Kypros explore the implications of BANG acknowledges the financial support Kyprianou. (converging technologies), including an of SwedBio (Sweden), HKH This symbol was one of three international seminar in Montpellier, Foundation (USA), CS Fund winners of ETC Group’s 2007 France, in November 2008 convened by (USA), Christensen Fund Nano-Hazard Symbol ETC Group, The What Next? Project, (USA), Heinrich Böll Contest. All entries can be BEDE, Fondation Sciences Citoyennes, as Foundation (Germany), the seen here: well as subsequent regional meetings Lillian Goldman Charitable Trust (USA), www.etcgroup.org/gallery2/main.php?g2 convened by (among others) Centro Oxfam Novib (Netherlands), Ben and Ecológico (Brazil), FASE (Brazil), African Jerry’s Foundation (USA) and the Biodiversity Network, African Centre for The Big Downturn? Nanogeopolitics is Norwegian Forum for Environment and Biosafety (South Africa), CASIFOP ETC Group Communiqué # 105 Development. (Mexico), Alliance for Humane Published in Ottawa, Canada, December Biotechnology (USA), EQUINET, ETC Group is solely responsible for the 2010 SEARICE (Philippines), Friends of the views expressed in this document. All ETC Group publications are available Earth (USA), ICTA (USA), Center for free of charge on our website: Genetics and Society (USA) and Movement Copy-edited by Leila Marshy www.etcgroup.org Generation (USA). Design by Shtig (.net)The Big Downturn? i Nanogeopolitics
  2. 2. The Big Downturn? Nanogeopolitics ETC Group revisits nanotech’s geopolitical landscape and provides a snapshot of current investment, governance and control, including intellectual property.ETC Group ii www.etcgroup.org
  3. 3. OverviewIssue ActorsIs Tiny Tech down in the dumps or just lying low? ETC The ground has shifted considerably in the five yearsconcludes that even though the market is soft and since ETC Group published its first survey of nano’sindustry is increasingly nervous about its health and geopolitical landscape. Despite bleak – and largelyenvironmental exposure, the world’s governments have rhetorical – forecasts of the U.S.’s diminishing stature ininvested too much (more than $50 billion through 2009) nanoworld, the USA (including the public and privateto retreat from a technology they’ve claimed will not parts of corporatized America) still spends the mostonly help end the recession but rescue the climate and money on R&D, though China fields more scientists.resolve Peak Oil. With Europe and the U.S. divided on Meanwhile, Russia has suddenly emerged as the biggestregulation, industry wants to dump its self-inflicted (but, perhaps, not the brightest or most consistent)“nanotechnology” moniker, determined not to public spender. Europe and Japan are still in thedraw unwelcome public attention until the game, but lagging. At least 60 countries haveregulatory nano-dust settles. Far from History state nanotech initiatives, includingsettling, the clouds are gathering to rain makes clear that new newcomers Nepal, Sri Lanka andon little nano’s surprisingly ponderous Pakistan. In 2010, nano is bigger in technologies don’t haveparade. Asia than in either North America or to work particularly well Europe. Worldwide, there are more to be profitable and than 2000 nanotech enterprisesAt Stake transformative. researching and/or manufacturingNanotech is still positioned as the multi- nanoparticles utilizing a largely uncountedtrillion dollar game-changer that will restructure (and unprotected) workforce. Partial estimatesglobal commodity markets. History makes clear that new include: 35,000 nanotech researchers in the globaltechnologies don’t have to work particularly well to be chemistry sector alone but, also, 63,000 workers inprofitable and transformative. Estimates of today’s Germany and another 2 million or so in the U.S. – allcommercial market range irrationally between a meager exposed to potentially hazardous nano-scale particles.$12 billion and a whopping $224 billion. The lower Five years from now, the number of workers is predictedfigure is closer to reality. In the absence of labeling rules to reach 10 million. (How many jobs nanotech’s(or common sense) nobody knows how many products commodity market disruptions could make obsolete iscontain what types (or sizes) of nanoparticles but one still not a topic for polite conversation.) Trade unions,survey has identified at least 1600 products. ETC such as IUF, ETUC and United Steelworkers, are takingbelieves the number of products – which includes foods, a tough stance on nano and civil society organizationsfeeds, pesticides and skin care products – is substantially have campaigned for strong oversight grounded inhigher. In the past couple of years, private nano precaution.investment has exceeded public funding so that, in 2010,total global investment probably exceeds $20 billion. So,“at stake” is our environment and the health of both oureconomies and our societies.The New Biomassters iii Nanogeopolitics
  4. 4. What is Nanotechnology? For example: • Carbon in the form of graphite (like pencil “lead”) is soft and malleable; at the nanoscale, carbon can Nanotechnology is a suite of techniques used to be stronger than steel – somewhere between 10 and manipulate matter on the scale of atoms and 500 times stronger, according to the science press – molecules. Nanotechnology speaks solely to scale: and is six times lighter. Nano refers to a measurement, not an object. A • Nanoscale copper is elastic at room temperature, “nanometer” (nm) equals one-billionth of a meter. able to stretch to 50 times its original length Ten atoms of hydrogen lined up side-by-side equal without breaking. one nanometer. • Aluminum – the material of soft drink cans – can A DNA molecule is about 2.5 nm wide. A red blood spontaneously combust at the nanoscale. cell is enormous in comparison: about 5,000 nm in diameter. Everything on the nanoscale is invisible to Researchers celebrate their “new, expanded periodic the unaided eye and even to all but the most table” of elements and are exploiting nanoscale powerful microscopes. property changes to create new materials and modify existing ones. Companies now manufacture Key to understanding the potential of nanotech is engineered nanoparticles that are used in thousands that, at the nanoscale, a material’s properties can of commercial products. Nanotech tools and change dramatically; the changes are called “quantum processes are being applied across all industry sectors. effects.” With only a reduction in size (to something Products on the market or in the pipeline include smaller than 1000 nm in at least one dimension) and cell-specific drugs; new chemical catalysts (used in no change in substance, materials can exhibit new the processing of petroleum, for example); foods characteristics – such as electrical conductivity, containing nanoscale ingredients; nano-scaffolds for increased bioavailability, elasticity, greater strength or tissue engineering; sensors to monitor everything in reactivity – properties that the very same substances the land, sea and air as well as everything in and on may not exhibit at the micro or macro scales. our bodies.ForaMost activity is still aimed at facilitating nano’s path from Since then, however, OECD efforts – led by the U.S. –lab to market, through research collaborations, standards have focused on containing the ICCM rebellion. Moredevelopment, and reportedly by early 2011, a formal recently, the UN Food and Agriculture Organizationcommodity exchange for trade in nanomaterials. In 2008, (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO)political differences on the meaning of responsible have gotten into the act and the International Labourstopped (or at least stalled) the International Dialogue Organization (ILO) will take up nano’s invisible hazardson Responsible Nanotechnology Development: EU at its XIX World Congress on Safety and Health atrepresentatives are feeling pressure to talk regulation; Work in Istanbul in September 2011. Importantly, theU.S. reps, not so much. About the same time, the UK’s UN’s Rio+20 Summit in 2012 will scrutinize nano’sDFID, Canada’s IDRC and the Rockefeller Foundation claim to be central to the future “Green Economy” – onehung up on the Global Dialogue on Nanotechnology of two Summit themes. Even if the G8/G-20 countriesand the Poor. Luckily, the International Conference on are indifferent or incompetent, the UN and the G77Chemicals Management (ICCM), egged on by civil seem willing to act.society, rebelled against regulatory inactivity on nano atits 2008 meeting in Senegal.ETC Group iv www.etcgroup.org
  5. 5. PoliciesTen years, $50 billion, and a couple of thousand productssince the nanotech boom began in 2000, the 60+ Nanos coming of age?governments with national programs still lack an agreed In November 2010, IBMs nano-logo turned 21 years old. Painstakinglydefinition for nano; an accepted measurement standard; arranged over a period of 22 hours using a scanning tunnelingreplicable research models; public health and microscope (STM), the "35 atoms that changed the world" signified the capture of atom-scale precision by corporate science. (See below.) In aenvironmental safety regulations; and the remotest 2009 press release marking the feats 20th anniversary, an IBM vice-understanding of the potential social-economic, president called the creation of the nano-logo "a defining moment" enabling research that will eventually lead to "advance computing...intellectual property or competition issues involved in using less energy resources.” Maybe by the time nanos a senior citizen?the several hundred nanomaterials under research ormanufacture. Barring catastrophe, it is increasingly Why this report? When ETC Group beganunlikely that OECD country regulators will have the investigating nanoscale technologies in 2000, an iconiccourage or the clout to provide the governance image showing 35 xenon atoms arranged to form thenanotechnology requires. Although the European letters I B M appeared everywhere in the popularParliament is prodding reluctant EC press – demonstrating, according toregulators, and even some U.S. scientists and journalists, an ability (bygovernment agencies show signs of Since our call corporate researchers) to controlacknowledging their mandates,industry is still telling OECD for a moratorium, individual atoms and arrange them science has cast nano’s in any desired configuration. Thestates to back off. Eight years ago, commercial potential ofETC Group called for a safety even further in doubt, unprecedented, precise atomic-moratorium until exposed with hundreds of studies now level manipulations was bothresearchers and workers couldproceed with reasonable safety demonstrating harmful obvious and great, and to effects from exposure to jumpstart the nano-revolution, theassurances and we asked for the U.S. government launched itswithdrawal of all products being nanoparticles. ambitious National Nanotechnologysprayed in the environment, ingested by Initiative in 2001. When, in mid-2002,people or animals, or used on the skin until ETC Group called for a moratorium on theproven safe. We continue to call for this commercialization of new nano products for health andmoratorium. Without effective intergovernmental safety reasons, the response bordered on hysteria. Ouraction, CSOs will redub the Rio(plus)20 Summit “Silent publication early the next year of The Big Down, inSpring(minus)50” marking the publication of Rachel which we reiterated our call for a moratorium andCarson’s groundbreaking book in 1962. warned of possible downsides to a nanotech revolution – including the privatization of the earth’s fundamental building blocks and the displacement of workers dependent on markets for traditional commodities – didn’t win us any more love from nanophiles.The Big Downturn? v Nanogeopolitics
  6. 6. The fledgling U.S. nanotech trade journal, Small Times,featured articles characterizing ETC Group as a “merryband of miscreants” with “avowed Maoist sympathies”whose “bizarre beliefs seem to be driving their attacks onlegitimate science and social advances to the detriment ofall of us.”1 In the intervening eight years since our call fora moratorium, science has cast nano’s safety even furtherin doubt, with hundreds of studies now demonstratingharmful effects from exposure to nanoparticles.In 2005, our merry band published Nanogeopolitics, aglobal survey of the (sad) state of nanoregulations. In2007, a broad coalition of civil society, public interest,environmental and labor organizations from across theglobe worked out a set of Principles for the Oversight ofNanotechnologies and Nanomaterials grounded in thePrecautionary Principle.2 2010 marks nearly a decade thatgovernments have been patting themselves on the backwith one hand – for being “pro-active” – and wavingaway red flags raised by scientists and civil societyorganizations with the other hand. Industry has generallyrefused to lend a hand at all, consistently declining toprovide information on activities or release data ontoxicity.Manipulating matter at the nanoscale has turned out tobe more complicated than IBM’s nano-logo led us all tobelieve, and investment in nanotech R&D has yet toreturn a “world-saving” application. Policymakers – somekicking and screaming – are beginning to acknowledgethat fast-tracking nanotech has come at a price and thatsome sort of regulation is needed to deal with at leastsome of the risks it poses. But governments and industry, Governmentshand in hand, have come too far and invested too much and industry have cometo give up on nanotech’s promise of becoming the too far and invested toostrategic platform for global control of manufacturing, much to give up on nanotech’sfood, agriculture and health – a pillar of the 21st promise of becoming acentury’s “green economy.” This report revisits nano’s pillar of the 21st century’s “green economy.”geopolitical landscape, providing a snapshot of globalinvestment, governance and control, includingintellectual property, in 2010.ETC Group vi www.etcgroup.org
  7. 7. Contents 4. Nano in the Age of Crisis 11 Financial Crisis 11 Climate Crisis and Peak Oil: 11 Overview iii Nano “Cleantech” to the Rescue Issue iii Box: What Exactly Is Cleantech? 12 At Stake iii Actors iii 5. Nano Neo Governance: 13 Fora iv Tiny Technologies / Big World Box: What is Nanotechnology? iv Knowing What to Regulate Would Be a Start 13 Policies v Box: Nanos coming of age? v What is Nano? 13 Box: Tiny Tech’s Titanic Impacts vi Where is Nano? 13 Nano Regulation in Europe: Tiny Steps in the 14 Right Direction?1. The State of the NanoNation 3 Or REACH: No Data, No Regulation 14NanoNation Roundup 3 Box: Regulatory Loopholes: Nanotubes 14 – Public Sector Investment End of the Regulatory Holiday? 14 Come on Down: NanoNation Contenders 4 Nanocosmetics: Regulatory Touch-Up 15 Table: Government Investment 2009 4 Nanofoods Still on the Shelf 15 Box: Military Nano: War Games 5 Regulating Nanos eHazards? 15Nano, Inc. – Private Sector Investment 5 The United States: Giant Investor / Nanoscale 16 Box: Irreconcilable Differences? Buyer Beware. 6 RegulatorMore than Money Matters: Other Indicators 6 Box: Nothing New About Nano? 16 Box: Nanosilver Spin Cycles 162. Market Forecasts: 7 Can’t – or Won’t? 17 From Banal to Bloated Box: U.S. Nanotech Regs: An Oversight? 17 Playing the Nano Numbers 7 Federal Inaction Prompts State Governments 18 Table: Lux Research’s Nano Value Chain 7 Nano’s Regulatory World Pass 18The Foggy Commercial Bottom? 7 Box: “Bulk Nano?” – A New Commodity 8 6. Voluntary Schemes: 19 Exchange for Nanomaterials Discount Governance Box: The Price of Tubes 9 Box: Uncle Sam Wants You!…To Buy Nanotech 19 Reporting Schemes: Industry’s a no-show 193. Jobs, Jobs, Jobs: 9 Box: EPA Scores its Nanomaterials 20 But Do We Want Them? Stewardship Program Cartoon: Teeni-WeeniLeaks 10 Why is Industry a No-show? 20 What About Worker Safety? 10The Big Downturn? 1 Nanogeopolitics
  8. 8. Box: Have Mercy on the Start-Ups 20 10. Insuring the Invisible 32 Gluttons for Punishment 21 Will They, Won’t They? 32 Box: “It’s a disaster” 21 Outclauses 32Codes of Conduct 22 The Responsible Nano Code: All Care 22 11. Nano Standards: Private Codes 33 and No Responsibility? Bottom Line: No Regs = No-show by Cos. 23 The Contenders 33 Box: Regulatory Harmony or the Sound of 23 Other Players in the Standards Arena 34 Silence? Progress: Baby’s First Words 35 I Came, ISO, I Conquered: 357. Intergovernmental 24 The Globalization of Private Standards Policy Frameworks 12. Codes of Monopoly: 36International Dialogue on Responsible 24 Research and Development of Nanotech Intellectual Property Nanotechnology The Morning After Hangover 37 The Picnic’s Over: Time for IPNiC? 24 Patent Pending…Reforms at the USPTO 37 Box: United Nations’ Nano Presence 25 Class of 2008: Nano Patent Activity at the USPTO 37The OECD Working Parties 25 Table: Top 5 Countries by Patent Activity 38 Box: OECD: Industry’s PR Department 26 at USTPO*The International Conference on Chemicals 26 Table: USPTO Nano Patents 1976 to 2008 38 Management The Miracle Molecule: Carbon Nanotubes at the 39 USPTO in 20088. Gone-a-Courtin’: 27 Carbon Nanotube Patents Awarded in 2008 39 Engaging the Public Carbon Nanotube Patent Applications 39 Filed in 2008 Who’s the EU talking to? 28 U.S. Government: Largest Patent 40 Illustration: Cover detail from Communicating 28 Patron for 2008 Nanotechnology Table: U.S. Government-funded R&D Leading 40 Box: Not So Bon Voyage for Nano? 28 to Nano Patents and Applications, 2008 The Prior Art of War: Military and Defense 419. The Science of Catching Up: 29 Applications Ums and Ehs Cartoon: M0.00016 - Dont ask! 41 Up for Grabs 29 Academia Boosts the Nano-War Effort 42 Box: United States EHS Research Effort 30 Gets an ‘F’ Appendix: Class of 2008 – Awarded 43The Generation Gap 31 Patents and Filed Applications of Note at the USPTO Box: “A war worth fighting”? 31 Endnotes 47ETC Group 2 www.etcgroup.org
  9. 9. Part 1. The State of the NanoNation “To promote industrial growth, a vibrant economy, NanoNation Roundup and social welfare, Europe must maintain its leading position in all fields of Nanotechnologies, Materials – Public Sector Investment Science and Engineering and Production Systems 2001 marked the beginning of the United States’ interagency (NMP).” National Nanotechnology Initiative; since then the federal – NMP Expert Advisory Group (EAG) Position paper government has invested around $12 billion dollars of public 14 on future RTD activities of NMP for the period funds, including $1.6 billion in 2010. The Department of 2010 – 2015, November 2009 Defense has gotten the biggest allowance with $3.4 billion (or just under 30% of the total nano R&D funds); the NationalNanotech has had a tough time over the last couple of years: Science Foundation just over 25%; the Department of Energyraising capital funds and turning a profit were uphill battles, 18%, and the Department of Health and Humanand commercialization faltered as no blockbuster products Services/National Institutes of Health 15% of the NNI 15 3emerged to rally the markets. In 2009, venture capital funds. President Obama’s budget for 2011 gives nanotech 4investment had dropped 43% from 2008 levels. By some another $1.8 billion. Some state governments, includingaccounts, public funding is still to peak as more states enter Georgia, New York, Oklahoma and Illinois, are funding 5the arena, but the rate of investment that marked the first half nanotech initiatives out of their own budgets, to the tune of 16 6of the nanotech decade has dropped sharply. According to an estimated $400 million per year – nudging all publicone industry analyst assessing nano’s performance in 2009, funding per annum over the $2 billion mark, but still below“Nanotechnology treaded water, barely staying afloat.” 7 total public EU spending.Meanwhile, rankings placed nano as one of three major The European Commission has invested around €5.1 billion 8technological risks facing the planet; as Europe’s top emerging through its Framework Programmes, with the current 9workplace risk; and one of the new global environmental Framework (FP7, 2007 through 2013) earmarking a total of 10threats to child health. 17 €3.5 billion for nanotechnology. In 2008, total publicThe sea may be rough, but there’s no doubt nanotech is funding (from the 27 member state governments and thekeeping its head above water, buoyed by greater government Commission) was $2.6 billion, accounting for 30% of globalinvestment with an eye toward moving products to market. public funding and putting it ahead of the U.S.’s federalFor Brussels, Moscow, Washington and Beijing, dominance in investment. The EU maintained its lead in 2009, although itsnanotech is still synonymous with economic competitiveness, slice of the public-funding pie shrunk to just over one-quarter 18industrial growth and even social wellbeing. 11 of global R&D. Germany, one of the world’s largest chemicalNanotechnologies remain a fixture of the future – a platform economies, leads the Europack with €441.2 million invested 19promising to permeate every sector of the economy. By the from all public sources in 2009. A 2010 review of the EU’send of 2009, governments had pumped more than $50 billion investment in nano R&D under the previous fundingof public funds – including a colossal $9.75 billion in 2009 by programme (FP6, 2002-2006) hints at lowered expectations, 20 12one count – into the technology. At least 60 countries now however. The report’s title: “Strategic impact, no revolution.”have state nanotech initiatives, investment programmes and/or Japan is a longstanding member of the NanoNation- 13publicly funded research programs. triumvirate with per annum investment hovering just above or below the $1 billion mark over the past five years. According to some analysts, 2009 saw Japan surpassing the U.S. in 21 successful commercialization of nanotech products.The Big Downturn? 3 Nanogeopolitics
  10. 10. Come on Down: NanoNation Contenders Brazil is a leader of nano development in Latin America. In 2009, the government invested over $44 million in nanoscaleWhile the U.S., the EU and Japan are still out in front in terms technologies through the Ministry of Science & Technology,of expertise, infrastructure, and capacity, market analyst firm which doled out funds equalling 1.4% of GDP to all areas ofCientifica reports that the share of the top three in R&D was science R&D. 31just 58% of global R&D spending by governments by 2009, 22compared with 85% in 2004. Other emerging economies are In general, Asian countries are big on nano. South Korea hasbeginning to shake up the NanoNation league table: invested US$1.4 billion in the technology over the past eight years and has announced itsRussia exploded onto the scene in 2007 intention to become one of the top threewith a massive cash injection (and the Germany’s future nanoindustry leaders by 2015. 32detonation of what was billed as the competitiveness in industries Undeterred, Thailand plans to be the 23first “nanobomb”). The Kremlin such as automotives, chemicals, focus of nano industrial activity inestablished a state corporation pharmaceuticals, medicine technology, 33 the ASEAN region, and Srifocused on nanotechnologies, information and communication technology, Lanka has recently made knownRusnano, and reportedly handed and optics, and in traditional industries such its plan to become the Asian hubit almost $4 billion to invest. The 34 of sustainable nanotech. As a as engineering, textiles, and construction, willaim was to capture 3% of the region, Asia’s investment had 24 largely depend on the realisation ofglobal nano market by 2015. topped that of the U.S. by 2007.Russia’s nano-investment became nanotechnological innovations. By 2008, investment in nanoless certain when, in 2009, some – Federal Ministry of Research and R&D from all sources – public,Rusnano funds were shifted back to Education, Nano-Initiative – Action private, including venture capital – instate coffers to plug wider funding Plan 2010, 2007 Asian countries reached $6.6 billiongaps; then, in July 2010 – in the wake of (with Japan responsible for a weighty $4.7a federal investigation of all state billion) according to U.S.-based consultancycorporations – Rusnano was reorganized into a Lux Research, compared to an estimated $5.7 billion 25publicly traded company. According to one from all sources (public and private) in the U.S. 35commentator, Russia remains a “minor league” player, despiteits investment, due to poor performance in IP and otheraspects of technology development, including so-called brain Government Investment in Nanotechnology 2009 36 26drain. 27The figures on China’s nano investment vary, but there is no % of % of totaldoubt that the country is committed to the technology. The total adjusted for PPP*Chinese Academy of Sciences reports public nano-investment 28 EU 27% 27%of $180 million per annum. London-based consultancyCientifica estimated China’s investment for 2008 at around (27 members + FP7)$510 million, which, when adjusted for so-called “purchasing Russia 23% 25%power parity,” put it in third place, tied with the U.S. and 29 U.S.A 19% 16%behind the EU and Russia (see table). In 2009, nanocommanded a greater portion of the science R&D budget in Japan 12% 9%China than in the U.S. 30 China 10% 18%South Africa has had its eye on nanotech for the better part of Korea 4%the last decade, paying particular attention to the impact new Taiwan 1%nanomaterials could have on minerals markets (e.g., platinum, * Purchasing India (<1%)palladium). The government launched its National Power Parity Rest of world 4%Nanotechnology Strategy in 2005, funding R&D through the 37Department of Science & Technology whose overall budget (Cientifica’s 2009 white paper on global funding of nanotech R&D didfor 2009/10 neared $600 million. not see the global recession having an immediate effect on government funding. Cientifica sees the slowdown as reflecting a shift from basic research to application-focused investment.)ETC Group 4 www.etcgroup.org
  11. 11. Military Nano: War Games Nano, Inc. The U.S. is understood to be making the world’s largest – Private Sector Investment investment in military applications of nanotechnology – More than once, decision-makers in Washington have been accounting for as much as 90% of global nano-military warned that the U.S. risks losing its lead in the nano race to 38 R&D by one estimate – though the UK, Netherlands, the EU, China, India, or Japan – or that the lead has already Sweden, France, Israel, India, China, Malaysia and Iran are 48 been lost. In commercializing tiny tech, the U.S. is reportedly all said to be investing some public funds in military 49 trailing Japan, Germany and South Korea. Stepped up research as well. adoption by the private sector, they say, is key to securing 50 The U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) has reportedly dominance. Across the Atlantic, the European Commission invested in “sub-micron technologies” since the 1980s 39 is similarly insecure about the EU’s position and, too, has and, in the first decade of NNI funding, received a total called for greater involvement and investment by the private 51 $3.4 billion for nano R&D – around 30% of the total sector. 40 federal investment for that period. The White House has While investment by the private sector is less transparent and proposed cutting the DOD’s nano R&D funds for the therefore more difficult to calculate – especially without the 2011 fiscal (in favour of greater funds for energy and benefit of proprietary market reports, just one of which can 41 health-related research), but still leaving the Department cost several thousand dollars – it is now agreed that corporate with some $349 million to spend. investment in nanotech R&D outstrips government spending. Projects in the UK’s Defence Technology Plan that both Lux Research predicted that global private sector investment 52 likely and explicitly include tiny tech suggest the Ministry would outpace government spending by 2005, but it was not of Defence is investing between £29.6 million and £73 until 2007 that the consultancy reported corporate R&D 53 million over a three-year period (2009-2012), though investment had nudged ahead. Cientifica reported corporate nano may not be a significant component of some of the funding had indeed pulled ahead by 2005 and estimates the projects; on the other hand, these projects may not reflect private sector will foot the bill for 83% of all nano R&D 54 the entire nano R&D portfolio. 42 investment by the end of 2010. Russia declared military applications to be high on its According to the European Commission (relying on figures 43 nanotech R&D agenda – an interest it punctuated with from Lux Research) private sector investment in nano R&D is the televised detonation, in 2007, of what the Kremlin highest in the Asia region ($2.8 billion), closely followed by declared to be the world’s first nanobomb – a fuel-air the U.S. ($2.7 billion), with European companies less 55 explosive with reportedly nanometer-sized features enthusiastic, at $1.7 billion. The U.S. is the clear leader in 44 endearingly dubbed the Father Of All Bombs. The bomb venture capital funding, cornering 80% of all investment from 56 carried almost 8 tonnes of explosives and flattened a four- that source. 45 storey building. Most Fortune 100 companies are said to be running nano Military applications are also within the Indian R&D programmes or using nano commercially. According to government’s sights. The Department of Science and a report by the U.S. President’s Council of Advisors on Science Technology (DST) has commandeered the Agharkar and Technology (PCAST, also relying on Lux Research Research Institute (ARI) to provide nanoparticles to the figures), the $2.7 billion investment by U.S. corporations into 46 defence establishment and the Indian Defence Research nano R&D breaks down as follows: around half to electronics & Development Organization (DRDO) is developing and IT, 37% to materials and manufacturing sector, 8% to manufacturing capacity in fullerenes and carbon healthcare and life sciences, and 4% to the energy and 57 nanotubes for use in stealth, smart materials and environment sector. 47 nanoelectronics.The Big Downturn? 5 Nanogeopolitics
  12. 12. In 2008, Cientifica estimated that corporations across theglobe would pump a staggering $41 billion dollars into nano More than Money Matters:R&D in 2010, in the following sectors: 58 Other Indicators• The semiconductor industry would continue to see the Investment by government and companies – however fuzzy largest share of corporate R&D investment, with a $19.5 the math – is the most obvious factor in assessing so-called billion investment predicted for 2010. technology leadership, but analysts are also watching closely• Pharmaceutical and health care industries would overtake the league tables in intellectual property (IP), science journal the chemical industry in nano R&D, with a projected $8.3 publications, research infrastructure, educational indicators billion compared to $7.4 billion by chemical companies. and commercialization data. Major players in chemicals are BASF, DuPont, Dow, On the IP front, the U.S. is believed to lead in total number of 62 Syngenta, 3M. In pharmaceuticals: Johnson & Johnson, granted patents. European Commission analysis has the EU 63 GlaxoSmithKline, AstraZeneca, Pfizer, Aventis. trailing well behind the U.S. in IP. Regarding patent• The aerospace and defense sectors would invest $2.7 billion applications – “the forward indicator” of technology-capture 64 in nano R&D, while the electronics industry was heading for – a different picture emerges, with China in the lead. Over $2.1 billion in 2010. The top corporate spenders in the 1991-2008 period, applicants in China had filed more aerospace and defense are BAE Systems, Boeing, Lockheed applications in total (16,348) than applicants in the U.S. 65 Martin, EADS, Honeywell International. (12,696) had filed, at their respective patent offices. (Mr.• Food companies were expected to spend just $22 million in Yang Mengjun alone accounts for more than 900 patents nano R&D in 2010. related to nano-scale formulations of traditional Chinese 66 medicines. ) In 2008, Chinese applicants filed almost twice as many applications (4,409) as U.S. applicants did (2,228). This, however, could also be an Irreconcilable Differences? Buyer Beware indication of the broad scope of patent claims While the two most prominent nano-consultancies – Lux Research in the filed by U.S. applicants compared to the more U.S. and Europe-based Cientifica – agree on general points (e.g., narrow claims made by inventors in other nanotech will play a critical role in the 21st century economy; private countries. investment now exceeds public investment), there is more than an ocean According to an OECD assessment, the U.S. separating them. The discrepancy between their investment figures is leads in scientific publications, with 22% of all anything but nanoscale, with Cientifica estimating that the global private journal papers related to nanoscience and sector would invest $41 billion in nano R&D just in 2010 – that’s nearly technology; China (11%), Japan (10%), as well as much as the global public sector has invested over a decade. While as Germany (8%), France (6%), and the UK Cientifica’s major nano-market report is proprietary, the $41 billion (5%). China, however, is closing the gap. 67 59 figure was presented in a (formerly) freely-available Executive Summary. According to assessments cited in the PCAST Lux Research puts private investment in nano R&D at about $7.2 billion. report, the U.S. lags China and the EU in total Lux’s 2009 report, which provides private sector investment figures by number of publications, although, they argue, 60 region, is also proprietary – and ETC Group didn’t buy it – so the numbers do not signify quality or influence nor timeframe in question is not clear to us. We’re guessing the $7.2 billion are the many publications by Chinese scientists refers to recent per annum investment, but publicly-available reports that appearing in the canon of twelve or so core relied on Lux for private investment figures – such as reports from the EC nanoscience journals – all English language Directorate-General for Research and the U.S. President’s Council of publications – where EU and U.S. scientists 61 Advisors for Science and Technology – aren’t explicit. In light of the 68 predominate. That said, China’s share of discrepancy between the Lux and Cientifica figures, it seems that publications in these journals is increasing at somebody (or maybe everybody?) who handed over thousands of dollars about the same rate as the U.S.’s share is for insider information on the nano-market is getting a bum steer. decreasing.ETC Group 6 www.etcgroup.org
  13. 13. Part 2. Market Forecasts: From Banal to BloatedEnthusiastic predictions of nano’s commercial returns Lux’s estimate for the total market value of nanotech in 2009continue to spur government investment. The figure said to may be $253 billion, but a teeny $1.1 billion (or 0.42%) ofhave launched a thousand nanotechnology initiatives is the that arises from nanomaterials themselves; and that’s about asU.S. National Science Foundation’s 2001 prediction that the good as it gets for the predicted value of nanomaterials untilworld market for nano-based products would reach US$1 2015, where these account for just 0.11% of the total valuetrillion by 2015. That landmark projection has since been chain. 69raised to $1.5 trillion, though U.S.-based Lux Research’s These figures would tend to support Lux’s assessment that thevisions of $3.1 trillion have been recently trimmed to $2.5 75 70 big money is not to be made manufacturing nanoparticles,trillion due to the global economic recession. (See below.) but they also confirm the OECD’s caution that such 76 approaches are likely to generate “significant overstatements,”Playing the Nano Numbers or, as one industry member put it, “terribly deceiving 77Assessing market value of nano is not a dark art, but it may numbers.”require some creative accounting alchemy, not least because Nevertheless, value chain predictions have receivedformal definitions of what constitutes nano are under considerable uncritical airtime unaccompanied by the morenegotiation and because the level of market activity is not fully sobering breakdown of the value chain. This incautious 71known. Indeed, like private investment calculations – and repetition may be due – at least partially – to the fact that theeven in hindsight – accounts of nano’s market share vary detail is typically inside the cover of proprietary consultancywildly: In 2007, the market value for nano was either $11.6 reports that are so expensive even governments are known to 72billion or $147 billion, depending on whom you consult. rely on the free summaries.In general, estimates from Lux Research occupy the high endof the scale and are among the most widely cited. Lux The Foggy Commercial Bottom?developed a “value chain” approach that combines the value ofthe (raw) nanomaterials, the “intermediates” they are The lack of labeling requirements, consensus on terminology,incorporated into, as well as the final, “nano-enabled” product pre-market assessment and post-market monitoring byto arrive at the total market value. The potential for bloat governments – as well as industry’s uncompromising lack offrom this method is considerable. For example, if a transparency – also contribute to the fog around nano’s markethousebuilder installs a kitchen countertop that incorporates impact. Most governments rely on charity – a freely availableantimicrobial silver nanoparticles, should nano’s contribution online inventory of consumer products developed by the U.S.- 78be understood as the value of the silver nanoparticles, the based Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies (PEN).countertop, or the value of the whole house? Lux Research According to that inventory, there were just over one thousandwould count all three. 73 product lines on the market as of August 2009 (when the inventory was last updated). That number is significantly lower than the actual number of commercialized products as the inventory lists only those products the manufacturer Lux Research’s Nano Value Chain 74 claims to incorporate nano and (US$ millions) does not cover intermediate Value % of Value % of Value % of products (such as coatings used in value in value in value in the automotive industry). 2009 chain 2012 chain 2015 chain Product 2009 2012 2015 A survey conducted by two government agencies in Canada Nanomaterials 1,074 0.42% 1,798 0.2% 2,916 0.11% a few months earlier than PEN’s Nanointermediates 28,839 11.36% 120,206 13.6% 498,023 20.2% latest assessment identified Nano-enabled products 223,785 88.22% 762,204 86.2% 1,962,950 79.66% roughly 1600 nanoproduct lines 79 Total V alue C hain 253,699 884,208 2,463,890 on the Canadian market.The Big Downturn? 7 Nanogeopolitics
  14. 14. Based on PEN’s product inventory, nanosilver is the mostcommon nanomaterial in commercial circulation, accounting “Bulk Nano?” – A New Commodityfor one-quarter of available nanoproducts. This is followed by Exchange for Nanomaterialscarbon nanomaterials (82), titanium (50), silica (35), zinc (30) 80 According to the web site of the Integrated Nano-Scienceand gold (27). Over half (540) of the products in the and Commodity Exchange (INSCX), a formalinventory are produced in the U.S.; Asia accounts for around commodity exchange trading platform for trading a wide25% of the production (240) and Europe 15% (154). range of nanomaterials will be launched in Europe and theWhatever the actual number of consumer products, it is 82 United States early in 2011. Based in the UK, theagreed that tiny tech is at an early stage of development – exchange will cover basic raw materials as well as finishedlaying claim to mostly trivial achievements when set against products. The goal of the exchange “is to be the focalthe technology’s revolutionary aspirations. In 2008, stain- point of the emerging world trade in nanomaterials,”resistant trousers had been, for one commentator, the best the assuring “quality and competitive prices” fortechnology had to offer in terms of “real life” products for half nanomaterials.a decade, aside from early commercial successes in 81semiconductor applications. • Technologies without a product: According to LuxDespite the lack of clarity regarding nano’s market, it appears Research, nanotech is widely seen as “a technology without a 88that the explosion in nano sales has not happened, “at least not product.” An advisory group to the EU points to the “need 83at the projected levels of the original NNI business model.” for clear market drivers, for example, industrial problems 89In addition to the worldwide financial slowdown, analysts that can be solved by the application of nanotechnologies.”point to a handful of challenges before nano can deliver the Without governments, investors and the like lining up topromised profits: purchase early stage products, “disruptive nanotechnologies will primarily remain as science projects and underfunded• Far horizons: Nano’s revolutionary or ‘disruptive’ 90 start-ups.” applications will require a long haul in R&D before big 84 money can be made. The nature of much of the • Wider industry wariness of nanotech: Stimulating industries revolutionary nano research agenda is characterized as ‘high- to incorporate nanotech in their product lines has proved risk, high-reward’ – one reason it tends to sit outside difficult. The news that in many cases, nanoproducts “will be 91 private sector investment horizons and only marginally profitable” hasn’t helped. More budgets. 85 significantly, Lloyd’s of London, the OECD and re-insurer SwissRe all report wider• Mass production, scaling up and industry concerns about nanosafety, quality control are fundamental for Despite regulatory uncertainty and public cost-effective nanomaterials that the wider manufacturing reportedly holding the 92 perceptions. Companies considering using nanomaterials in industry will use. At present, largest stack of patents, their product lines are advised to nanomaterial production is Procter & Gamble, for be especially diligent to avoid typically a low-volume affair, 93 example, appears to be liabilities down the road. generating considerable waste President Obama’s science and byproducts making some holding off on nanotech advisors also point to industry’s nanomaterials, at least, 86 prohibitively expensive. The because of potential reticence for fear of a consumer 94 backlash. Despite reportedly nanomanufacturing industry, liabilities. holding the largest stack of patents, according to an OECD assessment, “is Procter & Gamble, for example, appears still in its infancy and characterised by to be holding off on nanotech because of […] lack of infrastructure equipment for 95 potential liabilities. nanomanufacturing, and few efficient manufacturing methods especially in bottom-up approaches 87 to nanoscale engineering.”ETC Group 8 www.etcgroup.org
  15. 15. The Price of Tubes Cheap Tubes Inc., the bargain-basement retailer for CNT in the U.S., is on a mission “to help usher in the Carbon Governments, universities and companies are proposing to Nanotubes-CNTs Application Age.” In November 2010, use carbon nanotubes in every product from the mundane to Cheap Tubes offered multiwalled nanotubes for as little the Martian, including fertilizers, home cleaning products, $600/kg (for non-functionalized varieties) and ~$1,500/kg drug delivery systems, combat gear, fuel cells and space 101 for high purity tubes. (Bargain shoppers may be able to get elevators. even cheaper tubes from the Hanoi-based Institute for To begin generating real profits, nanotubes will need to Material Sciences if the half-price sale they announced in 102 become affordable. Prices have been reportedly going down 2009 is still on. ) – one source describes ‘nosedives’ of 43% for multiwalled Industrial demand is currently low, with applications tubes (MWNTs) since 2005 and 33% for single-walled tubes relegated to the low hanging ‘fruit-of-the-looms’ until the 96 (SWNTs). Another commentator reports prices dropping 103 industrial sector shows greater interest. The potential for 97 “by three orders of magnitude” over the past few years. Lux some types of tubes to behave like asbestos fibres has, rightly, Research predicted in late 2009 that the price for standard not helped whet the appetite of potential buyers. In addition, grade MWNTs will drop to approximately $50 per kilogram hefty technological hurdles stand in the way of scaling up 98 at some unspecified point in the future, while another nanotube production for widespread commercial use. 104 estimate predicted the price would drop to $30/kg-$40/kg Although a number of companies have boosted production 99 in the next three-four years. The industry will have to get capacity (Bayer and Arkema, among others), manufacture of cracking to meet those projections. In 2004, the price of multi-walled nanotubes – the most widely used carbon nanotubes was predicted to fall to $284/kg by commercially – is generally operating at “single-digit percent 100 2007. That has yet to happen, even for low-grade multi- utilisation.” 105 walled tubes.Part 3. Jobs, Jobs, Jobs: But Do We Want Them?Enthusiastic characterizations of nanotech as job creator In short supply, too, are assessments of the jobs that nanotechabound. Forecasts from the turn of the millennium include may take away – particularly in countries of the global South –the National Science Foundation’s estimate of two million so net job creation is not known. In a 2005 report prepared 106new workers by 2015 (or seven million assuming that for for the Geneva-based South Centre, The Potential Impacts ofeach nanotech worker another 2.5 positions are created in Nano-Scale Technologies on Commodity Markets: The 107 112related areas). What the OECD labels “even more optimistic Implications for Commodity Dependent Developing Countries,forecasts” are from Lux Research, which estimates that 10 ETC Group provided a preliminary look at the potentiallymillion manufacturing jobs related to nanotechnology will devastating socio-economic impacts if nano’s promise to up- 108emerge within the next four years. end traditional markets is realized and governments are notIn any case, attempts to put numbers on the current nano prepared. The report focused on rubber, platinum and copperworkforce are rare. As with market analysis, assessments because those markets have been identified as likely to berelated to employment are difficult due to lack of government dramatically affected by the introduction of newoversight of nanotech R&D and commercial activity as well as nanomaterials and because the materials are currently heavilythe lack of a consensus definition for nano. In 2008, Cientifica sourced from the global South. More recently, social scientistsestimated that 35,000 researchers in the worldwide chemicals Guillermo Foladori and Noela Invernizzi have examined 109sector were engaged in nanotech R&D. The German nano’s implications for labour and development, focusing on 113government put the number of people involved in nano R&D Latin America. 110and commercial activity within its borders at 63,000. AnOECD review takes the position that there is “a largediscrepancy” between the projections and the state of the 111workforce.The Big Downturn? 9 Nanogeopolitics
  16. 16. What About Worker Safety? Workers (and consumers), of course, do not have the luxury of waiting for experts to come to a consensus on the healthIn 2000 – pre-nanotech boom – an estimated 2 million people effects of nanoparticle exposure. In 2007, IUF (Internationalwere already being exposed to nanoscale particles at work in United Food, Farm, Hotel workers) called for a moratoriumthe United States (e.g., in by-products of diesel combustion, on commercial uses of nanotechnology in food and agriculture 114sanding or abrasion of metals, wood, plastic). Production, until they could be shown to be safe andhandling and use of engineered nanoparticles have created ETUC (European Trade Unionnew venues for workplace exposure, with poorly understood Confederation) has alsoconsequences. The most dramatic case to date involved “We have only demanded the application ofseven female workers in China who were exposed to scratched the surface of the Precautionary Principle.polyacrylate (a polymer/plastic ingredient in an adhesive nanotechnology’s potential United Steelworkerspaint) containing nanoparticles. All of the women to create jobs.” International (Northbecame sick with breathing problems; two of them died. – U.S. Congressman Dan Lipinski, America) has called forA team of Chinese scientists examined the lung tissue of pledging support for nanotechnology at regular medical screeningsall seven women, found nanoparticles lodged in cells of the 8th annual NanoBusiness Conference, of workers exposed tothe lungs and concluded, cautiously, that the seven cases Chicago, September 2009 nanoparticles. In 2007, a“arouse concern that long-term exposure to some Perhaps Rep. Lipinski’s most memorable endorsement of nanotech came in April broad coalition of civilnanoparticles without protective measures may be society, public interest, 115 2009 at the NanoNow Science andrelated to serious damage to human lungs.” Technology Leadership Forum, hosted by environmental and laborThe publication of the Chinese study in the peer- the University of Chicago: organizations published areviewed European Respiratory Journal in 2009 sparked set of Principles for the “I have drunk the nanotecha storm of speculation on its implications, with several Oversight of kool-aid. I believe it’scommentators taking the “precautionary” position that Nanotechnologies and the next Industrial Nanomaterials grounded inunknowns about the specific workplace conditions, Revolution.” the Precautionary Principle. 117including the absence of worker protections, cast doubt onthe usefulness of the study and prevented conclusions from Calls to make nano products liable 116being drawn. No one, however, ventured to categorically as part of a regulatory regime have beenexonerate nanoparticles. issued by ETUC and the European Parliament’s Committee 118 on Employment and Social Affairs, among others.ETC Group 10 www.etcgroup.org
  17. 17. Part 4. Nano in the Age of CrisisFinancial Crisis Climate Crisis and Peak Oil:The global recession may have deflated an industry prone to Nano “Cleantech” to the Rescue‘bubbling,’ but the financial crisis hasn’t been all bad news fornanotech. It has provided a stimulus to increase government The nano industry has leapt onto the Cleantechfunding in some areas, drawing on the theory that investment (hybrid)bandwagon with both feet. The convergence ofin innovation is a sure route out of recession. In India, government support of nanotech and venture capital fundinggovernment officials cast nanotech as “the answer for future of cleantech is a boon for the industry as nanotechnologies arerecessions as it helps in reducing wastage of material and claimed to provide “clean” solutions through miniaturization 119enhancing quality by almost 40 per cent.” In the U.S., nano (reduced raw material requirements), reduced energy usage,has been heralded as the “rejuvenating fuel in the economy’s greater efficiencies in solar energy generation (i.e., 120engine” and the “road out of the recession.” Government photovoltaics), biofuels, greenhouse gas transformation andstimulus packages have responded accordingly, use and greater capacity in water and bioremediation.particularly in energy and environment-related Miniaturization has already been achieved innano R&D. Indeed, according to one certain commercial applications (particularlyindustry member, the U.S.’s alternative in ICT), but for the rest, nano’s role inenergy policy “cannot advance The rush “clean technologies” remainswithout the successful into nano-cleantech aspirational and contingent. Lux 121commercialization of nanotech.” investment is of particular Research estimated cleantech wouldThe American Recovery and account for just 1.8% of the market concern because there is, value that nano is expected to earnReinvestment Act (ARRA) 125directed an additional $140 as yet, little to support the by 2015. In 2007, Cientifica estimated that 0.00027% could bemillion toward nanotechnology assertion that nano is shaved off emissions by 2010 usingresearch and infrastructureinvestments in 2009. That included inherently currently available nanotech, but that future revolutionary applicationsa $40 million cash injection to the clean. will result in fewer greenhouse gasDepartment of Energy for nano R&D, 126which comes on top of funding increases emissions. 122to the Department. The Obama Big NanoNations, such as USA, Germany andadministration has proclaimed nanotech “a very Japan, are said to be leading the charge in cleantechpowerful tool for achieving some of the president’s goals such investment. Signature initiatives in the U.S. federal budgetas accelerating the transition to a low-carbon economy and proposal for 2011 include Nanotechnology Applications for 123reducing death and suffering from cancer.” Solar Energy (a joint agency initiative to receive $51 million)The European Union has come up with a €200 billion and Sustainable Nano manufacturing ($23 million), which isRecovery Plan, with three public-private-partnership R&D to focus on “high-speed communication and computation,programs aimed at accelerating progress in energy efficient solar energy harvesting, waste heat management and recovery, 135cars and buildings and future manufacturing. (The and energy storage.”programme will run on funds redirected from FP7 nano- 124manufacturing budgets. )The Big Downturn? 11 Nanogeopolitics
  18. 18. What Exactly Is Cleantech? The rhetoric is certainly seductive. After all, “who wouldn’t want a technology that is ‘safe by design’, that can deliver For some, cleantech is a fundamentally new approach that clean water to billions, or enable consumption without “addresses the roots of ecological problems with new science, negative effects on ourselves or our environment?” 132 emphasizing natural approaches such as biomimicry and 127 biology.” For others, the brand is like a smokestack Included under the cleantech banner is nuclear power scrubber – a laundering service for problematic technologies generation – the technology that was to provide electricity (such as nuclear, coal) that could make business-as-usual “too cheap to meter” but persists as the technology too ‘sustainable.’ Rather than referring to a specific set of difficult to decommission and too difficult to clean up after. technologies, the term cleantech almost always points to a That should be sufficient to encourage critical evaluation of new market opportunity that has emerged from the eye of the cleantech concept. But the rush into nano-cleantech the perfect storm created by climate change and peak oil. investment is of particular concern because there is, as yet, little to support the assertion that nano is inherently clean, There appears to be a consensus within industry that including the accumulating data on the health effects of cleantech refers to applications that “add economic value exposure to nanomaterials and the absence of lifecycle 128 compared to traditional alternatives.” It has been described analyses. 129 as “the largest economic opportunity of the 21st century” and a “natural fit” between economic growth and projected The nano-cleantech hype also casts a long shadow in R&D 130 environmental gains. At the moment, however, cleantech is investment and blocks out the sun on a range of other effectively a fundraising slogan. The mere announcement of competing strategies and approaches with the potential to government research grants for cleantech projects including deliver less risky alternatives. Consultants to the UK nano-pesticide production was claimed to have made the Government advised that nano applications in energy Canadian economy “instantly cleaner.” 131 efficiency and generation due to come online in the longer- term may offer significant gains, but that these may not Gift Horse Dental Exam: Should civil society welcome necessarily outperform competing technologies and “they governments’ new emphasis on cleantech investment and the probably underestimate technological advances in non- effect that funding incentives may have on the orientation of 133 nanotechnological innovations.” “It is important,” says one some nano R&D? commentator, “that we do not choose too early the winners 134 and losers among technologies.”Fuel cell technology involving nano alone is attracting $1 In the U.S., a new lobby launched this year to leverage morebillion per annum investment in International Energy Agency funds for nano cleantech. Pitched from the politically potent 136(i.e., OECD) countries. A 2008 United Nations University intersection of energy security and national security, thereport listed 70 hydrogen fuel cell projects in varying stages, NanoAssociation for Natural Resources and Energy Security 137from R&D to pilot commercialization. (NANRES) is a self-described group of “forward-thinking leaders” with a shared interest in bringing nano to market.The EU’s Seventh Framework Programme (2007-2013) The lobby is on a member-recruitment drive, but the chair hasembraces nano cleantech and includes a €55 million fund to 138 already been supplied by arms manufacturer Lockheed Martinproduce biofuels. Among the projects funded is ROD SOL and the CEO by the Washington-based thinktank, Center for– a three-year, €4 million project to boost solar power a New American Security. The group is not short onefficiency using inorganic nano-rod based thin-film solar cells. optimism: “Nanotechnology is the answer that will empower, strengthen, and secure our nation’s energy security 139 condition.”ETC Group 12 www.etcgroup.org

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