Pursuant to the 1906 Osage Allotment Act, the surface estates in the Osage reservation were subdivided and allocated to tribal members while the subsurface rights
were held in a trust administered by the BIA.
ConocoPhillips Alaska also started production in October at its CD5 drill site in the Colville Delta Unit of the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska on surface lands owned by Kuukpik Corporation, the village corporation for Nuiqsut, and subsurface rights
owned by Arctic Slope Regional Corporation.
and subsurface rights
, mineral rights and wind power assets associated with the timberlands.
1) it transfers subsurface rights
to claims holders, arguably threatening RRDC's asserted aboriginal title, and
However, as subsurface rights
belong to the Crown, landowners have little incentive to allow drilling on their property.
Even if the government itself undertakes the cleanup, there are a variety of legal tools available to seek the recovery of costs from the property owners/ lessors who are liable because either they own part or all of the impacted property and its subsurface rights
, or were involved in allowing the drilling operation to use their property or subsurface formations for such operations, thus contributing to the alleged harm.
The project developer must acquire not only surface property rights but also subsurface rights
The author and his colleagues played a major role here as they attended meetings in isolated communities and delineated pockets of subsurface rights
that they felt should be part of any agreement.
This led to an Agreement-in-Principle in 1978, which contemplated allotment to the Inuvialuit of about 22% of the land they occupied, about 32 000 square miles of surface rights including 5000 square miles of subsurface rights
Today, those subsurface rights
are leased to energy and mining companies by the Bureau of Land Management.
The taking of their subsurface rights
eliminates or at least inhibits their ability to sell for this use.