Chemical Aquatic Fate and Effects (CAFE) Database
The Chemical Aquatic Fate and Effects (CAFE) database is a software program you can use to estimate the fate and effects of thousands of chemicals, oils, and dispersants. CAFE serves as a tool to help responders in their assessment of environmental impacts from chemical or oil spills into an aquatic environment. Using CAFE, you can choose between four different spill scenarios: chemical, oil only, dispersant only, and dispersants mixed with oil.
CAFE is available in two formats:
- Web-based CAFE 2.0 ("Web CAFE") - Equipped with new features described below.
- Desktop CAFE for Windows or Mac ("desktop CAFE")
Data in CAFE are presented in two modules, which can provide complementary information to responders:
- Aquatic Fate module
- Aquatic Effects (Toxicity) module
The Aquatic Fate module provides you with the following information about the pollutant:
- Structure and physical properties (e.g., boiling point, water solubility, molecular weight)
- Environmental fate (e.g., estimated Koc, biodegradation time, partitioning)
In the Aquatic Effects module, you can navigate through a series of steps to produce a Species Sensitivity Distribution (SSD), a curve based on acute effects (LC50, EC50) for various exposure times (24, 48, 72, and 96 hours) to a specific pollutant. SSDs are probabilistic models that show the sensitivity of biological species to a chemical or oil.
Also included in CAFE are Short Exposure Risk Reports for a selected number of chemicals, and a User-Added section that allows you to add your own data to SSDs (desktop version only).
CAFE is now available as a web-based product, Web CAFE, introduced in February 2020, which has the following advantages over the desktop version:
- the most up-to-date data.
- an improved chemical name search engine.
- the ability to save and compare Species Sensitivity Distribution (SSD) curves for multiple chemicals on one graph, as well as export the data to a CSV file.
- the ability to export toxicity data.
- for those chemicals with too few data points, the ability to create a predictive SSD curve based on Interspecies Correlation Estimate (ICE) modeling.
You can continue to use the desktop version of CAFE, which includes a user-added section that allows you to add your own data for computing SSD curves.
More Information about CAFE
CAFE Fact Sheet [PDF, 410 KB]: Learn more about basic features of CAFE in this short fact sheet. CAFE was developed by NOAA's Office of Response and Restoration, in collaboration with Research Planning, Inc.
Questions: Contact us with your questions, comments, or suggestions for CAFE.