Skip to content



The Comprehensive Emergency Management System (CEMS) of the Department of Energy/National Nuclear Security Administration (DOE/NNSA) provides the overall framework for responding to all emergency events involving or affecting the Department. The CEMS is defined by the requirements of DOE Order 151.1 COMPREHENSIVE EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM and the associated Emergency Management Guide. The development of this order and the associated guidance has been an iterative process.

The Subcommittee on Consequence Assessment and Protective Actions (SCAPA) has been an integral part of this process by providing recommendations on emergency management issues to the Office of Emergency Management and developing guidance and products for use in the CEMS.

After years of operating as a part of the Emergency Management Advisory Committee, SCAPA is now a subcommittee of the Emergency Management Issues Special Interest Group (EMI SIG). The purpose of the EMI SIG is to foster the exchange of information, ideas, resources, and products of interest within the DOE/NNSA emergency management community.

Mission Statement

The SCAPA will support the Office of Emergency Management by developing and disseminating throughout the DOE/NNSA community technical guidance, recommendations, and resources to improve emergency preparedness, consequence assessment capabilities, and the formulation of protective actions.

The goal of the SCAPA will be to enhance the ability of the DOE/NNSA emergency preparedness and response community to protect the health and safety of workers, members of the public, and ecological resources in the event of the release to the environment of any hazardous radiological, chemical, or biological materials.

Membership and Organizational Structure

The SCAPA will be composed of Federal employees and contractors from a wide spectrum of DOE/NNSA facilities. SCAPA membership will be open to DOE and contractor personnel who are doing emergency response and planning work for the DOE or are doing technical work that has applications to emergency response and planning. Membership will also be extended to other Federal agencies having a need to participate. Membership in the SCAPA will be voluntary.

The SCAPA Chair will be a Federal employee or contractor appointed by the Office of Emergency Management. The subcommittee will be supported by working groups specializing in selected topics or elements within the CEMS. Membership in working groups will be determined by the SCAPA Chair. Selection will be based on experience and expertise relevant to the specific focus of each working group.

SCAPA decisions concerning topics of interest will be made with a simple majority vote of the full subcommittee during a regularly scheduled meeting or during a virtual meeting (e.g., a conference call or video conference), or by written or electronic balloting.

Objectives and Functions

The objectives and functions of SCAPA are

  • to review relevant requirements for emergency preparedness and response aspects of consequence assessment and protective actions, and to review relevant requirements for other areas of emergency management;
  • to identify additional requirements or the need for specific implementing guidance;
  • to develop or review implementing guidance and recommendations of special concern to the Office of Emergency Management—for example, Emergency Response Planning Guidelines, Acute Exposure Guideline Levels, Temporary Emergency Exposure Limits, methodologies for dealing with chemical mixtures, and Protective Action Guidance;
  • to provide guidance on the development, deployment, and implementation of consequence assessment models;
  • to identify or develop research needs or issues related to improvements in emergency management of biological, chemical, and nuclear operational emergencies;
  • to perform specific reviews and provide technical recommendations as requested by the Office of Emergency Management or the EMI SIG;
  • to provide an information-sharing forum to promote consistency throughout the DOE/NNSA for the emergency management of releases of hazardous materials; and
  • to provide a source of expertise in planning for responses to nuclear, biological, and chemical hazardous materials emergencies —this may involve the consideration of incidents involving inadvertent releases, terrorist activities, the use of weapons of mass destruction, natural disasters, and other events.


Meetings will be held in conjunction with the annual EMI SIG meeting. Additional meetings (e.g., via conference calls or video-teleconference) will be arranged by the Office of Emergency Management as needed.

Following each meeting, succinct minutes, including issues identified, will be developed and submitted by the Chair to the Office of Emergency Management within 20 working days.