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Fact Sheet 2012–3089

The 3D Elevation Program—Summary of Program Direction

By Gregory I. Snyder

Thumbnail of and link to report PDF (2.65 MB)


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. The 3DEP initiative was recommended by the National Digital Elevation Program and its 12 Federal member agencies and was endorsed by the National States Geographic Information Council (NSGIC) and the National Geospatial Advisory Committee (NGAC).

Revised September 13, 2012

First posted June 27, 2012

For additional information contact:
Mark DeMulder
U.S. Geological Survey
511 National Center
12201 Sunrise Valley Drive
Reston, VA 20192

Part or all of this report is presented in Portable Document Format (PDF); the latest version of Adobe Reader or similar software is required to view it. Download the latest version of Adobe Reader, free of charge.

Suggested citation:

Snyder, G.I., 2012, The 3D Elevation Program--Summary of Program Direction: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2012-3089, 2 p., available at

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