Ever since someone choked a mouse with carbon nanotubes in an attempt to prove their toxicity, people have been running round giving huge doses of nanomaterials to everything from bacteria to fish. Of course the huge doses involved, far in excess of anything that would be encountered in the real world, could be equally well used to prove that bananas are dangerous.
In the same spirit, a team of researchers have determined in the words of New Scientist that “Antibacterial socks may boost greenhouse emissions” the lead reseracher seems to have a bit of an issue with nanom aterials anyway, stating that “These particles are developed with the express purpose of killing things.” Hmmm.
As one commenter points out the tub dosed with 55 micrograms of silver nanoparticles per gram of sludge, which is allegedly a concentration of silver similar to levels often found in waste water, is some 35 micrograms above the level where silver recovery is economically viable.
However, the results are inclusive, leading the researchers to conclude
a) that further experiments are necessary, “including the setting up of a complete wetland ecosystem to measure how it might be affected by waste water containing silver nanoparticles” and
b) that if the results were replicated on a large scale, it could “further contribute to concerns about global changes in climate”.
This all leads me to conclude that New Scientist is becoming less scientific and more like the Daiy Mail.