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Benefits of Mapping Alaska

Multiple State and Federal agencies are collaborating to update and improve Alaska digital map data. Accurate data are essential to the responsible economic and industrial development of Alaska, the preservation of human life and safety, and the advancement of scientific discovery and physical science. Updated Alaska digital map data and US Topo maps over Alaska will be available for free to the general public.

  Climate Change
Alaska benefits thumbnail image Accurate elevation and hydrography data are required to properly conduct climate research and predictive modeling. Critical considerations of climate change in Alaska include the effects on safe sources of drinking water, coastal erosion, and increasing sea levels threatening the destruction of some native villages.
  Transportation Safety
Alaska benefits thumbnail image Aviation safety requires accurate elevation data to provide pilots with improved situational awareness through a clear-day view of terrain unaffected by conditions that hamper visibility, such as stormy weather or smoke. The clear view improves safety for situations including emergency medical evacuations that take place in all weather conditions day or night.
  Disaster Preparedness, Mitigation, and Recovery
Alaska benefits thumbnail image Accurate map information is critical to modeling wildfire behavior, storm surge modeling, floodplain mitigation, oil spill response, tsunami inundation, emergency planning and response, and search and rescue missions.
  Resource Management
Alaska benefits thumbnail image Managing and conserving natural resources such as watersheds, vegetation, and coastlines depend on accurate maps, and accurate and up-to-date mapping is critical to understanding impacts affecting these resources in a changing environment.
  Energy, Infrastructure, and Economic Development
Alaska benefits thumbnail image Accurate maps are foundational to infrastructure, utility and transportation development; oil and gas infrastructure, and mineral development; industrial planning including groundwater contamination mitigation and restoration; urban and agricultural land use development; project design and engineering; and telecommunications development.
  Boundaries, Zoning, and Water Bodies
Alaska benefits thumbnail image Water is a major force impacting the constantly changing topography of Alaska, and updated National Hydrography Data will provide a new baseline dataset. Improved boundary data will support cross-jurisdictional emergency aid services and resource management planning.
  Health, Dignity, and Traditional Values
Alaska benefits thumbnail image Human health and welfare, the dignity of Alaska youth, and traditional values of Alaska Native cultures can be enhanced by modernized maps through sound decision- making related to Alaska Native resources.
  Recreation and General Use
Alaska benefits thumbnail image New maps with recent imagery, improved land surface and structures information, and accurate contours will greatly benefit outdoor enthusiasts and the general public by providing an updated base for orientation.

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