Today the National Park System totals more than 84 million acres, yet over 2.6 million acres of privately owned land exists within NPS boundaries. Acquisition of all privately owned land within a given park boundary is not always necessary and, in some cases, not feasible. However, many of these lands are important for visitor use and preservation of resources and have therefore been identified to be purchased or protected through the acquisition of a scenic/conservation easement interest. Each year, the NPS Land Resources Program cooperates with federal agencies; tribal, state, and local governments; nonprofit organizations and private property owners to provide the appropriate protection measures for conserving large landscapes, preserving cultural resources, protecting trails, and restoring ecosystems.
Funding for land acquisition within the National Park System is derived primarily from the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). Established by Congress in 1965, the LWCF comprises revenue generated from offshore oil and gas leasing, not taxpayer dollars. The federal portion of the LWCF is used to acquire lands, waters, and interests therein necessary to achieve the natural, cultural, wildlife, and recreation management objectives of the NPS and other federal land management agencies.
The National Park Service is pleased to present the first-ever Accomplishments Report for the Land Resources Program. Spanning three years, the report showcases an array of partnership projects that illustrate the diversity and complexity of the work of Land Resources staff across the country. You may download a pdf version of the report here. Printed copies of the report are also available from the national program office in Washington, D.C. In addition, the Land Resources brochure provides general information about the program. (For best results when printing, choose booklet setting in print options.)
For further information, please contact PPFL_LandsNet@nps.gov.