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Advisory Groups

Community, industry and government advisory groups

NICNAS ensures its regulatory program responds to the needs of its community, industry and government stakeholders by engaging with advisory groups that represent these sectors.

Information about NICNAS's principal advisory groups is provided below.

Details of their activities each year are provided in NICNAS annual reports. For 2011–12, this information can be found at:

Community Engagement Forum (CEF)

Members of the CEF provide advice to NICNAS about industrial chemical concerns of three sectors:

  • worker health and safety;
  • public health; and 
  • the environment. 

CEF members help NICNAS address aspects of the community's information requirements by developing strategies to improve public access to health and safety and environmental information about industrial chemicals.

The CEF is guided by its Terms of Reference. Each year, it develops a work plan.

The CEF developed the Community Engagement Framework: a ten-point plan for the CEF and NICNAS to work together to ensure community engagement in all NICNAS activities and programs.

The Community Engagement Forum brochure proves background information about the CEF. The Community Engagement Charter brochure outlines the principles and protocols that NICNAS follows in the conduct of its work—and that it maximises opportunities for effective engagement about industrial chemicals.

In Existing Chemicals Review—National Public Engagement Strategy CEF members outlined nine recommendations for successful public engagement, derived from the CEF's involvement in mounting the 2006 Existing Chemicals Reveiw consultation program, with NICNAS. 

Recent activities have included a:

  • discussion of NICNAS's Business Plan; and
  • discussion of NICNAS's performance in such work as IMAP assessments and the scope of the national assessment of chemicals associated with CSG extraction project.

The CEF usually holds three face-to-face meetings each year.  

Industry Government Consultative Committee (IGCC)

The IGCC is guided by its Terms of Reference. In brief, it:

  • reviews:
    • the use of resources against NICNAS objectives; and
    • the performance of NICNAS against agreed performance indicators—in particular the impact on industry and the protection of human health and the environment;
  • and develops strategies:
    • for improving the efficiency and effectiveness of NICNAS operations concerning established goals and objectives, and developing and emerging issues; and
    • for compliance (including monitoring their effectiveness).

The IGCC currently has eight members, including:

  • four members representing industry, from:       
    • Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI)
    • Accord Australasia
    • Australian Paint Manufacturers Federation (APMF)
    • Plastics and Chemicals Industries Association (PACIA); 
  • four members representing government, from:
    • Australian Government Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR)
    • Australian Government Department of Environment
    • Australian Government Department of Industry, Innovation, Climate Change, Science, Research and Tertiary Education (DIICSRTE)
    • NICNAS.

A representative of DoHA is an ex-officio member.

Recent activities have included:

  • contributing to the preparation and review of the NICNAS Strategic Plan and NICNAS Business Plan;
  • reviewing NICNAS's quarterly performance and approaches to the budget and priorities; and
  • reviewing NICNAS compliance strategies.

The IGCC usually holds three face-to-face meetings each year. 

Nanotechnology Advisory Group (NAG)

The NAG was established in March 2008. It advises NICNAS on measures that can be taken to ensure that regulations can manage any risks arising from industrial nanomaterials.

The NAG comprises three individuals representing the community, three representing industry, one expert in nanoscience, one expert in toxicology, and a NICNAS representative.

The group's tenure has been extended twice, in line with the continuing reform work in this area. It is expected that the NAG's term will end in March 2014.

For more information about NICNAS's work on nanomaterials, see the Nanomaterials webpage.

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