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3D Elevation Program - Publications


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The 3D Elevation Program—Landslide Recognition, Hazard Assessment, and Mitigation Support: The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Landslide Hazards Program conducts landslide hazard assessments, pursues landslide investigations and forecasts, provides technical assistance to respond to landslide emergencies, and engages in outreach. All of these activities benefit from the availability of high-resolution, three-dimensional (3D) elevation information in the form of light detection and ranging (lidar) data and interferometric synthetic aperture radar (ifSAR) data. Research on landslide processes addresses critical questions of where and when landslides are likely to occur as well as their size, speed, and effects. This understanding informs the development of methods and tools for hazard assessment and situational awareness used to guide efforts to avoid or mitigate landslide impacts. Such research is essential for the USGS to provide improved information on landslide potential associated with severe storms, earthquakes, volcanic activity, coastal wave erosion, and wildfire burn areas.




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Status of the 3D Elevation Program, 2015: The 3D Elevation Program (3DEP) is a cooperative activity to collect light detection and ranging (lidar) data for the conterminous United States, Hawaii, and U.S. territories; and interferometric synthetic aperture radar (IfSAR) elevation data for Alaska during an 8-year period. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and partner organizations acquire high-quality three-dimensional elevation data for the United States and its territories that support requirements beyond what could be realized if agencies independently pursued lidar and IfSAR data collection activities. Data collection rates have been increasing as a growing number of State and Federal agencies participate in cooperative data acquisition projects. USGS and partner agencies expanded data collection, completed the initial product delivery systems and implemented changes to the program governance to include a restructuring of the 3DEP working group and formalizing the relationship to the Federal Geographic Data Committee during the final year (2015) of program preparation.




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The 3D Elevation Program—Precision Agriculture and Other Farm Practices: The agriculture industry, including farmers who rely on advanced technologies, increasingly use light detection and ranging (lidar) data for crop management to enhance agricultural productivity. Annually, the combination of greater yields and reduced crop losses is estimated to increase revenue by $2 billion for America's farmers when terrain data derived from lidar are available for croplands. Additionally, the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) estimates that the value of improved services for farmers, through its farm assistance program, would be $79 million annually if lidar-derived digital elevation models (DEMs) are made available to the public.




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The 3D Elevation Program and America's Infrastructure: The American Society of Civil Engineers has warned that, despite the importance of the Nation’s infrastructure, it is in fair to poor condition and needs sizable and urgent investments to maintain and modernize it, and to ensure that it is sustainable and resilient. Three-dimensional (3D) lidar elevation data provide valuable productivity, safety, and cost-saving benefits to infrastructure improvement projects and associated construction management. By providing data to users, the 3D Elevation Program (3DEP) of the U.S. Geological Survey reduces users’ costs and risks and allows them to concentrate on their mission objectives.




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Status report for the 3D Elevation Program, 2013–2014: The 3D Elevation Program (3DEP) goal is to acquire, manage, and distribute enhanced three-dimensional elevation data for the Nation and U.S. territories by 2023. This status report covers implementation activities during 2013–2014 to include meeting funding objectives, developing a management structure, modernizing systems, and collecting and producing initial 3DEP data and products.




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The 3D Elevation Program—Summary of Program Direction: The 3D Elevation Program (3DEP) initiative responds to a growing need for high-quality topographic data and a wide range of other three-dimensional representations of the Nation’s natural and constructed features. The National Enhanced Elevation Assessment (NEEA), which was completed in 2011, clearly documented this need within government and industry sectors. The results of the NEEA indicated that enhanced elevation data have the potential to generate $13 billion in new benefits annually. The benefits apply to flood risk management, agriculture, water supply, homeland security, renewable energy, aviation safety, and other areas.




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The 3D Elevation Program Initiative—A Call for Action: The 3D Elevation Program (3DEP) initiative is accelerating the rate of three-dimensional (3D) elevation data collection in response to a call for action to address a wide range of urgent needs nationwide. It began in 2012 with the recommendation to collect (1) high-quality light detection and ranging (lidar) data for the conterminous United States (CONUS), Hawaii, and the U.S. territories and (2) interferometric synthetic aperture radar (ifSAR) data for Alaska. Specifications were created for collecting 3D elevation data, and the data management and delivery systems are being modernized.




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State Fact Sheets: Elevation data are essential to a broad range of applications, including forest resources management, wildlife and habitat management, national security, recreation, and many others. Elevation data is critical for agriculture and precision farming, natural resources conservation, flood risk management, infrastructure and construction management, water supply and quality, and other business uses.




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National Enhanced Elevation Assessment at a Glance: Elevation data are essential for hazards mitigation, conservation, infrastructure development, national security, and many other applications. Under the leadership of the U.S. Geological Survey and the National Digital Elevation Program (NDEP), Federal agencies, State agencies, and others work together to acquire high-quality elevation data for the United States and its territories.




 


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Page Last Modified: Monday, 06-Mar-2017 14:36:01 EST