USGS announces forthcoming 3D Elevation Programme

A new 3D Elevation Programme (3DEP), is the outcome of a partnership between USGS and other federal, state, local and private agencies in the United States, designed to respond to the growing needs for three-dimensional mapping data of the United States.

The 3DEP initiative is based on the results of the National Enhanced Elevation Assessment, which documented business needs for elevation data across agencies from all 50 States, including 34 Federal agencies, local government and Tribal offices, and private and not-for profit organizations.

The programme will systematically collect enhanced elevation data over the U.S. territory. Data will be in the form of high-quality light detection and ranging (lidar) data, a remote sensing detection system that works on the principle of radar, but uses light from a laser.

3DEP will help communities cope with natural hazards and disasters, support infrastructure, ensure agricultural success, strengthen environmental decision-making and bolster national security.