Western Arctic Reserve

The Western Arctic Reserve contains some of the world’s best and most sensitive wildlife and bird habitat.

The 22 million-acre Western Arctic reserve, also called the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska, is vital to thousands of caribou, millions of migratory birds, polar bears, wolves and musk oxen.

At Wilderness, we work to ensure that oil development in the Western Arctic Reserve occurs responsibly and that sensitive special areas are protected from drilling.

Why the Western Arctic Reserve

The Western Arctic Reserve provides some of the world’s best and most sensitive wildlife and bird habitat - including the famous Teshekpuk Lake.

Work we’re doing

The Wilderness Society works with the Department of the Interior, which manages the reserve, to keep drilling rigs out of the most sensitive areas.

Our partners

We work with a number of local, regional and national conservation groups to help protect the Western Arctic Reserve.

  • Map and infographics showing the region of the plan, what matters in the Pacific Northwestt (1), what people want in a Northwest Forest Plan (2) and what most voters support in a revised Northwest Forest plan (3). A two page summary of the polls results is below the map and infographics.

  • statewide survey of 600 registered voters in Washington, Oregon and California, with an additional oversample of 200 registered voters in California counties, was conducted by telephone using professional interviewers, including 45% of all interviews conducted via cell phone.

  • “We Can’t Wait: Why we need reform of the federal coal program now,” shows how the industry has been passing on millions in costs every day to the public. The status quo of the program has impacted public lands to the tune of billions of dollars and could multiply if coal companies aren’t held responsible for cleanup as they go bankrupt. Damages due to climate change from mining emissions will cost billions and drinking water for entire cities could be lost to mining or polluted beyond safe drinking levels.