Why the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

America’s largest wildlife refuge is under pressure from oil companies that want to drill for oil in the crown jewel of our national refuge system.

This 19-million-acre refuge in Alaska’s Arctic is home to bears, wolves, caribou, musk oxen and other species. It is a critical source of food for Alaska Native communities that depend on it for their subsistence and way of life.

The Wilderness Society has fought for decades to protect this special place from oil development, especially the Arctic coastal plain that is the biological heart of the refuge.

Saving the Arctic Refuge

The Arctic Refuge is one of the finest examples of wilderness left on Earth and among the least affected by human activity. Its wilderness values are timeless and irreplaceable.

Although the refuge is managed to maintain its natural condition, oil companies and members of Congress have fought for more than 20 years to open the Arctic Refuge to oil drilling. The Wilderness Society is committed to permanently protecting the refuge from oil development.