Land tenure and availability

Petroleum reserved blocks

A petroleum reserved block is an area where you can't explore or drill for petroleum resources.

This is further outlined under section 9 of the Petroleum Act 1984.

The Northern Territory (NT) Government has finalised its reserved block policy following public consultation. Read the reserved block policy PDF (1.7 MB).

Reserved blocks in the NT are being declared in the four stages known as tranches PDF (79.3 KB).

The Scientific Inquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing determined there are areas in the NT that should be reserved blocks.

These areas include towns, parks, reserves and areas of high ecological value.

To read the report, go to the The Scientific Inquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing website.


Reserved blocks, also known as no-go zones, will be declared over 49% of the NT land mass.

Get a map of all areas identified as reserved blocks PDF (1.9 MB).

There are seven reserved block categories.

1. Parks and reserves

All parks and reserves in the NT will be reserved blocks.

Get a map of the parks and reserves to be declared PDF (3.8 MB).

2. Towns

All gazetted towns with a two kilometre buffer, the Katherine municipality and the Alice Springs municipality will be declared.

Get a map of the areas to be declared PDF (1.8 MB).

Get a map of the Katherine areas to be declared PDF (645.1 KB).

Get a map of the Alice Springs areas to be declared PDF (624.7 KB).

Communities on Aboriginal Land Rights (Northern Territory) Act 1976 land will be declared following discussions with the land councils.

3. High conservation value

There are 67 sites of conservation significance in the NT. They protect diversity values including threatened species and wetlands.

All sites of conservation significance will be declared.

Get a map of the areas to be declared PDF (4.3 MB).

4. Indigenous Protected Areas

These are areas covered by an agreement between traditional owners and the Commonwealth Government to promote biodiversity and cultural resource conservation.

All Indigenous Protected Areas (IPAs) will be declared.

Get a map of the IPAs to be declared PDF (3.8 MB).

5. Cultural significance

Areas that are culturally significant can be declared.

Sacred sites are fully protected under existing legislation.

6. High tourism value

Areas of high tourism value often fall into another category.

If an area of high tourism does not fall into another category, the Minister for Mining and Industry will consider declaring the area after consulting with the Minister for Tourism and Hospitality.

7. No petroleum potential

Get a map of the areas of no petroleum potential that will be declared PDF (3.7 MB).

Reserved blocks will be declared in four tranches.

Review the decision tree PDF (189.4 KB) that was used to determine which tranche an area belongs to.

Tranche one

Tranche one includes areas where there is no granted exploration permit.

Tranche two

Tranche two includes joint managed parks.

These will be declared once the relevant boards of management have been notified.

Tranche two includes 29 parks and reserves.

Tranche three

Tranche three includes areas where there is a granted exploration permit.

The Department of Industry, Tourism and Trade will negotiate with the permit holders to relinquish those areas.

Tranche four

Tranche four includes areas that are on Aboriginal Land Rights (Northern Territory) Act 1976 (ALRA) land.

These areas will be declared when land councils advise the Minister for Mining and Industry that they support the declaration.

Sixty per cent of the area to be declared is on ALRA land.

The areas below have been declared as petroleum reserved blocks in the NT.

Get a printable version of the reserved blocks map PDF (687.7 KB).

Original reserved blocks

Reserved block numberName Gazette date
RB2 West MacDonnell National Park 28/05/2008
RB4 Town of Katherine 18/07/2012
RB5 Town of Tennant Creek 18/07/2012
RB5 Town of Alice Springs 18/07/2012
RB51 Port of Darwin 31/05/2012
RB53 Marrakai Dam 31/05/2012
RB54 Bynoe Harbour 25/07/2012
RB55 Bradshaw 19/12/2012
RB56 Greater Darwin Area 3/10/2013
RB57 Dulcie Range National Park 9/10/2013
RB60 Warrai Dam 15/10/2013
RB66 Elsey National Park Extension 26/08/2015
RB67 Nitmiluk National Park 1/11/2016
RB68 Manton, Darwin River Dam and AROWS 12/01/2017
RB69 Watarrka National Park 24/05/2017

Reserved blocks declared under the reserved block policy

Category 1 - parks and reserves

Reserved block numberName Gazette date
RB103 Adelaide River Foreshore Conservation Area 23/10/2019
RB104 Anna’s Reservoir Conservation Reserve 23/10/2019
RB105 Attack Creek Historical Reserve 23/10/2019
RB106 Barrow Creek Telegraph Station Historical Reserve 23/10/2019
RB107 Butterfly Gorge Nature Park 23/10/2019
RB108 Central Mount Stuart Historical Reserve 23/10/2019
RB109 Channel Island Conservation Reserve 23/10/2019
RB110 Channel Point Coastal Reserve 23/10/2019
RB111 Connells Lagoon Conservation Reserve 23/10/2019
RB112 Cutta Caves Nature Park 23/10/2019
RB113 Daly River (Mt Nancar) Conservation Area 23/10/2019
RB114 Douglas River/Daly River Esplanade Conservation Area 23/10/2019
RB115 Fish River Gorge Block 23/10/2019
RB116 John Flynn Historical Reserve 23/10/2019
RB117 Kintore Caves Conservation Reserve 23/10/2019
RB118 Leaning Tree Lagoon Nature Park 23/10/2019
RB119 Limmen Bight Marine Park 23/10/2019
RB120 Limmen National Park (part only) 23/10/2019
RB121 Litchfield National Park 23/10/2019
RB122 Mac and Rose Chalmers Conservation Reserve 23/10/2019
RB123 Oolloo Crossing Conservation Area 23/10/2019
RB124 Ryan Well Historical Reserve 23/10/2019
RB125 Stray Creek Conservation Area 23/10/2019
RB126 Tennant Creek Telegraph Station Historical Reserve 23/10/2019
RB127 Tjuwaliyn (Douglas) Hot Springs Nature Park 23/10/2019
RB128 Umbrawarra Gorge Nature Park 23/10/2019
RB129 Woodgreen Conservation Reserve 23/10/2019
RB130 Newry Station Gouldian Finch Conservation Covenant 23/10/2019
RB131 St Vidgeon Management Area (part only) 23/10/2019
RB132 Keep River National Park 23/10/2019
RB133 Keep River National Park Proposed (part only) 23/10/2019
RB168 Alice Springs Telegraph Station Historical Reserve 26/02/2020
RB169 Arltunga Historical Reserve 26/02/2020
RB170 Barranyi (North Island) National Park 26/02/2020
RB171 Chamber’s Pillar Historical Reserve 26/02/2020
RB172 Djukbinj National Park 26/02/2020
RB173 Finke Gorge National Park 26/02/2020
RB174 Garig Gunak Barlu National Park (Cobourg Marine Park) 26/02/2020
RB175 Garig Gunak Barlu National Park (Gurig National Park) 26/02/2020
RB176 Giwining / Flora River National Park 26/02/2020
RB177 Gregory’s Tree Historical Reserve 26/02/2020
RB178 Harrison Dam Conservation Reserve 26/02/2020
RB179 Iytwelepenty / Davenport Ranges National Park 26/02/2020
RB180 Judbarrra / Gregory National Park 26/02/2020
RB181 Kakadu National Parlk 26/02/2020
RB182 Karlu Karlu / Devils Marbles Conservation Reserve 26/02/2020
RB183 Kuyunba Conservation Reserve 26/02/2020
RB184 Mac Clark (Acacia Peuce) Conservation Reserve 26/02/2020
RB185 Mary River National Park 26/02/2020
RB186 Melacca Swamp Conservation Reserve 26/02/2020
RB187 N’Dhala Gorge Nature Park 26/02/2020
RB189 Native Gap Conservation Reserve 26/02/2020
RB190 Ruby Gap Nature Park 26/02/2020
RB191 Tnorala (Goss Bluff) Conservation Reserve 26/02/2020
RB192 Trephina Gorge Nature Park 26/02/2020
RB193 Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park 26/02/2020
RB194 Yeperenye / Emily and Jessie Gaps Nature Park 26/02/2020
RB195 Fogg Dam Conservation Reserve 26/02/2020
RB196 Black Jungle / Lambells Lagoon Conservation Reserve 26/02/2020
RB197 Joint Geological / Geophysical Reserve 26/02/2020
RB199 Limmen National Park (Maria Island) 26/02/2020
RB200Bullwaddy Conservation Reserve27/05/2020

Category 2 - towns and residential areas

Reserved block numberName Gazette date
RB70 Town of Adelaide River 23/10/2019
RB71 Town of Alice Springs 23/10/2019
RB72 Town of Batchelor 23/10/2019
RB73 Town of Borroloola 23/10/2019
RB74 Town of Brocks Creek (2km buffer) 23/10/2019
RB75 Town of Burrundie (2km buffer) 23/10/2019
RB76 Town of Finke 23/10/2019
RB77 Town of Fleming (2km buffer) 23/10/2019
RB78 Town of Harts Range (2km buffer) 23/10/2019
RB79 Town of Hatches Creek 23/10/2019
RB80 Town of Jabiru 23/10/2019
RB81 Town of Kalkarindji 23/10/2019
RB82 Katherine Municipality 23/10/2019
RB83 Town of Maranunga 23/10/2019
RB84 Town of Mataranka 23/10/2019
RB85 Town of Newcastle Waters 23/10/2019
RB86 Town of Pine Creek (2km buffer) 23/10/2019
RB87 Rocky Hill Bore Field 26/02/2020
RB89 Town of Ti Tree 23/10/2019
RB90 Town of Timber Creek and Victoria River Deport Historical Reserve 23/10/2019
RB91 Town of Union Town (2km buffer) 23/10/2019
RB92 Town of Urapunga 23/10/2019
RB93 Town of Yulara 23/10/2019
RB201Town of Daly Waters27/05/2020
RB202Town of Larrimah05/08/2020

Category 3 - sites of conservation significance (SOCS)

Reserved block numberName Gazette date
RB94 Chambers Bay 23/10/2019
RB95 Elkedra River floodout swamps 23/10/2019
RB96 Frew River floodout swamps 23/10/2019
RB97 Howard Sand Plains 23/10/2019
RB98 Lake Sylvester System 23/10/2019
RB99 Mary River Coastal floodplain 23/10/2019
RB100 Mud Hut Swamp 23/10/2019
RB101 Shoal Bay 23/10/2019
RB102 Wood Duck Swamp 23/10/2019

Category 4 –  indigenous protected areas (IPAs)

Reserved block number


Gazette date


Katiti-Petermann IPA


Category 7 - geological areas with no petroleum potential (NPP)

Reserved block numberName Gazette date
RB134 Musgrave Province 23/10/2019
RB135 Archean Part 1 23/10/2019
RB136 Archean Part 2 23/10/2019 
RB137 Davenport Province Part 1 23/10/2019 
RB138 Davenport Province Part 2 23/10/2019 
RB139 Warramunga Province Part 1 23/10/2019 
RB140 Warramunga Province Part 2 23/10/2019 
RB141 Aileron Province Part 1 23/10/2019 
RB142 Aileron Province Part 2 23/10/2019 
RB143 Aileron Province Part 3 23/10/2019 
RB144 Aileron Province Part 4 23/10/2019 
RB145 Aileron Province Part 5 23/10/2019
RB146 Aileron Province Part 6 23/10/2019
RB147 Aileron Province Part 7 23/10/2019
RB148 Irindina Province Part 1 23/10/2019
RB149 Irindina Province Part 2 23/10/2019
RB150 Warumpi Province Part 1 23/10/2019
RB151 Warumpi Province Part 2 23/10/2019
RB152 Warumpi Province Part 3 23/10/2019
RB153 Warumpi Province Part 4 23/10/2019
RB154 Warumpi Province Part 5 23/10/2019
RB155 Warumpi Province Part 6 23/10/2019
RB156 Tanami Region Part 1 23/10/2019
RB157 Tanami Region Part 2 23/10/2019
RB158 Tanami Region Part 3 23/10/2019
RB159 Tanami Region Part 4 23/10/2019
RB160 Tanami Region Part 5 23/10/2019
RB161 Tanami Region Part 6 23/10/2019
RB162 Murphy Province Part 1 23/10/2019
RB163 Murphy Province Part 2 23/10/2019
RB166 Pine Creek Orogen Part 1 23/10/2019
RB167 Pine Creek Orogen Part 2 23/10/2019

You can view current granted petroleum titles and applications for petroleum titles on STRIKE.

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Last updated: 30 September 2020

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