Resource Nicholas Lund Feb 10, 2017

National Parks Affected by 9B Rules

These 40 parks have active oil and gas wells or are at risk of future oil and gas development within their boundaries. Park Service 9B rules aim to safeguard these parks from the negative effects of drilling.

National Park Sites with Active Oil and Gas Wells

ParkStateNumber of WellsNumber of Companies Operating Wells
Alibates Flint Quarries NMTX51
Aztec Ruins NMNM42
Big Cypress NPresFL201
Big Thicket NPresTX3716
Big South Fork NRRATN, KY15231
Cuyahoga Valley NPOH9021
Cumberland Gap NHPTN, KY, VA21
Gauley River NRAWV283
Lake Meredith NRATX17417
New River Gorge NRWV11
Obed WSRWV52
Padre Island NSTX142

National Park Sites Without Active Wells, but Where Drilling Could Take Place in the Future*

ParkState
Bluestone NSRWV
Cane River Creole NHPLA
Carlsbad Caverns NPNM
Chaco Culture NHPNM
Dinosaur NMCO
Everglades NPFL
Flight 93 MemorialPA
Fort Necessity NBPA
Fort Union Trading Post NHSND
Friendship Hill NHSPA
Glen Canyon NRAAZ, UT
Grand Teton NPWY
Great Sand Dunes NP & PRESCO
Guadalupe Mountains NPTX
Gulf Islands NSMS, FL
Hopewell Culture NHPOH
Indiana Dunes NLIN
Jean Lafitte NHP & PRESLA
Johnstown Flood MemorialPA
Little River Canyon NPresAL
Mammoth Cave NPKY
Mesa Verde NPCO
Nocodemus NHSNE
Palo Alto Battlefield NHPTX
San Antonio Missions NHPTX
Santa Monica Mountains NRACA
Steamtown NHSPA
Theodore Roosevelt NPND
Upper Delaware SRRNY, PA
Washita Battlefield NHSOK

*These parks are at risk of drilling because the federal government owns the surface lands and private companies own some of the mineral rights below the surface. This situation is called a “split estate,” and it presents a potential for conflict when a private company exercises its rights to extract minerals while the National Park Service tries to uphold its legal mandate to leave parks “unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations.”

About the author

  • Nicholas Lund Senior Manager, Landscape Conservation Program

    As Senior Manager for the Landscape Conservation Program, Nick focuses his efforts on oil and gas activities in and around our national parks. In his spare time, Nick writes silly things about birds for TheBirdist.com, Audubon, and Slate.