Current majority government:
Premier: Ranj Pillai, Yukon Liberal Party
Number of Members of Legislative Assembly in YK: 19
Yukon Liberal Party: 8
Yukon Party: 8
New Democratic Party: 3
You can find your representative in the Yukon Legislative Assembly here: (3)
Environmental stance of majority party:
On its website, the Yukon Liberal Party shared their belief that “In order to diversify Yukon’s economy in the future, we need more energy than we currently have. However, that need for energy must be balanced with lessening our carbon footprint and other negative impacts on our environment. Reducing the use of energy and expanding the availability of renewable energy make achieving this balance possible. The sustainability and preservation of Yukon’s environment, its wildlife and its resources is critical to our future.” (4)
Percentage of 2020/2021 budget estimated to be allocated to the environment:
Total 2023-2024 Estimated Budget: $1,937,836,000
Total 2022-2023 Estimated Spending: $2,020,836,000
Department of Energy, Mines, and Resources:
Estimated Budget for 2023-2024: $82,282,000 (4.25% of the budget)
Estimated 2022-2023 Spending: $85,191,000 (4.22% of the budget)
$2,909,000 projected funding decrease from 2022-2023 to 2023-2024
Department of Environment:
Estimated budget for 2023-2024: $61,458,000 (3.17% of the budget)
Estimated 2022-2023 Spending: $52,815,000 (2.61% of the budget)
$8,643,000 projected funding increase from 2022-2023 to 2023-2024 (5)
Main provincial-level legislation for environment protection:
Solid Waste Action Plan (2013) (6)
The Government of Yukon set a goal of halving the amount of waste in landfills by 2015, with an overall goal of being Zero Waste by 2040.
Yukon Ambient Air Quality Standards (7)
Details the maximum amount of specific pollutants (eg: oxone, nitrogen dioxide) permitted in the ambient air, set to be re-updated along with national standards in 2025.
Devolution Transfer Agreement (8)
An agreement between the federal government of Canada and territorial government of Yukon, sharing the responsibility for cleaning up mining sites.
Specific government-based environmental programs:
Good Energy Rebates (9)
Offering anywhere form 25-75% rebate when homeowners and business owners complete eco-friendly renovations.
Yukon Rideshare (10)
Encourages drivers to carpool by offering discounts on gas and parking, matches drivers and passengers.
Turn in Poachers and Polluters (TIPP Line) (11)
A service in which citizens can report incidents in which environmental policies are disobeyed (eg: illegal hunting and fishing practices) to authorities.
Our Clean Future: A Yukon strategy for climate change, energy, and a green economy (12)
A strategy developed by the territorial government of Yukon, containing action plans and relevant milestones over the course of the next ten years (2020-2030), to bring about a more sustainable and environmentally just future in the territory.
Next election date:
The Yukon Elections Act was amended in 2020 to implement fixed dates. The next territorial election is scheduled to be on or before Monday, November 3, 2025 (13).
Yukon was the recipient of $1.987 million of funding to support projects focused on adaptation to climate change via the Climate Change Preparedness in the North Program from Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada (14).
Sea ice in the Yukon is becoming thinner and younger as about 300 km^3 of sea ice disappears every year (15).
As temperatures rise at three times the rate as the rest of the world, houses built on permafrost will begin to grow mold as well as decompensate structurally (16).
In recent years the Spruce bark beetle outbreak, aided by increasing temperatures, led to the death of half of the Spruce trees in the Southwest of the territory. This event highlights that with increasing temperatures, the territory may be at high risk of more invasive species moving in and having detrimental effects (17).
In order to take advantage of the natural resources in Yukon’s forests (i.e. chopping up firewood for use in one’s house), citizens of Yukon are required to have a Forest Resource Permit, which lasts for a maximum of three years and cannot be renewed (18).
Of the $60 million spent by the Yukon on heating each year, $50 million of that spending is used to import fossil fuels, causing increased greenhouse gas emissions coming from the territory (19).
Territorial government has committed to setting an emissions reduction goal for the territory’s mining industry, external to the 45% reduction by 2030 emissions goal, by the end of 2022 (20).
During the 2021 territorial election, the Yukon Liberal party shared its goal for 97% of the territory's power to come from renewable energy sources, as well as expanding grid and energy access to remote communities currently excluded (21).