Washington, D.C. — Today the Center for American Progress released a map that highlights 30 national park units that face the prospect of future oil and gas drilling and 12 national park units that have current drilling operations. Among the 30 threatened areas, the Flight 93 memorial in Pennsylvania and the Everglades in southern Florida would be vulnerable in a scenario where no option is taken off the table and federal oversight of energy on public lands is eliminated in favor of more relaxed state regulations. The 12 park units with existing operations would also face a greater threat if current regulations were not in place.
Based on these data that the Public Lands Project at the Center for American Progress requested from the National Park Service, CAP compiled the map below:
Currently, any development activity on public lands, including national parks, must take place in accordance with various federal environmental laws to protect air, water, wildlife, and public health, but it may not always be this way. Oil and gas drilling is a dirty business that can have considerable impacts. And spills are frequent both on shore and off shore—for example, one estimate found that in North Dakota just in 2011, there were more than 1,000 spills of oil, wastewater, or other drilling fluids.
The data contained in this map were compiled by assessing three factors: the parks’ proximity to oil and gas resources, significant drilling activity already occurring near the parks’ boundaries, and the existence of mineral rights within the parks.
To speak with CAP experts on this topic, please contact Christina DiPasquale at 202.481.8181 or firstname.lastname@example.org.