CAMEO® (Computer Aided Management of Emergency Operations)
is a system of software applications used widely to plan for and respond to chemical emergencies. It is one of the tools developed by EPA’s Office of Emergency Management (OEM) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Office of Response and Restoration (NOAA), to assist front-line chemical emergency planners and responders. They can use CAMEO to access, store, and evaluate information critical for developing emergency plans. In addition, CAMEO supports regulatory compliance by helping users meet the chemical inventory reporting requirements of the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA, also known as SARA Title III). CAMEO also can be used with a separate software application called LandView ® to display EPA environmental databases and demographic/economic information to support analysis of environmental justice issues.
The CAMEO system integrates a chemical database and a method to manage the data, an air dispersion model, and a mapping capability. All modules work interactively to share and display critical information in a timely fashion.
CAMEO initially was developed because NOAA recognized the need to assist first responders with easily accessible and accurate response information. Since 1988, EPA and NOAA have collaborated to augment CAMEO to assist both emergency responders and planners. CAMEO has been enhanced to provide emergency planners with a tool to enter local information and develop incident scenarios to better prepare for chemical emergencies. The Bureau of Census and the U.S. Coast Guard have worked with EPA and NOAA to continue to enhance the system.
Who Uses CAMEO?
- State Emergency Response Commissions (SERCs) and Tribal Emergency Response Commissions (TERCs)
- Local Emergency Planning Committees (LEPCs)
- Environmental Organizations
- Police Departments
- Emergency Communications Agencies
( Mapping Applications for Response, Planning and Local Operational Tasks)
MARPLOT is the mapping application. It allows users to “see” their data, (e.g. roads, facilities, schools, response assets) display this information on computer maps, and print the information on area maps. The areas contaminated by potential or actual chemical release also can be overlaid on the maps to determine potential impacts. MARPLOT was developed jointly by NOAA and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
ALOHA® - (Areal Locations of Hazardous Atmospheres)
The ALOHA air dispersion model predicts the downwind dispersion of a chemical cloud. Graphical outputs include estimates of the cloud footprint (representing the area where hazardous gas concentrations may reach a level of concern), the rate and duration of release of the chemical to the atmosphere, and chemical concentration over time at locations of particular concern.
ALOHA is a modeling program that estimates threat zones associated with hazardous chemical releases, including toxic gas clouds, fires, and explosions. A threat zone is an area where a hazard (such as toxicity, flammability, thermal radiation, or damaging overpressure) has exceeded a user-specified Level of Concern (LOC). ALOHA was developed jointly by NOAA and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
- Generates a variety of scenario-specific output, including threat zone plots, threat at specific locations, and source strength graphs.
- Calculates the rate of release for chemicals escaping from tanks, puddles (on both land and water), and gas pipelines and predicts how that release rate changes over time.
- Models many release scenarios: toxic gas clouds, BLEVEs (Boiling Liquid Expanding Vapor Explosions), jet fires, vapor cloud explosions, and pool fires.
- Evaluates different types of hazard (depending on the release scenario): toxicity, flammability, thermal radiation, and overpressure.
- Displays threat zones on MARPLOT maps (and on ArcView and ArcMap with the Arc Tool extensions)
- Works seamlessly with companion programs CAMEO and MARPLOT; it can also be used as a standalone program.