Energy, Mines and Resources

Government's role in oil and gas development

The history of oil and gas development in Yukon

Responsibility for onshore oil and gas resources was transferred to Yukon from the federal government on November 19, 1998. But Yukon’s history relating to oil and gas goes back more than 70 years.

During the Second World War, in response to the Japanese invasion of the Aleutian Islands, the Canol pipeline was constructed, and it transported crude oil from Norman Wells, NWT to a refinery in Whitehorse.  The Canol pipeline operated for 16 months and delivered just over one million barrels of oil.

Yukon’s drilling history dates back almost 60 years, as Yukon's first well was drilled in 1958 in the Eagle Plain basin. A total of 76 wells have been drilled in Yukon, the most recent were four wells were drilled in 2012-2013 in Eagle Plain.

After natural gas was discovered in the Kotaneelee area in southeast Yukon, the Spectra Energy pipeline transported this gas to southern markets from 1978 until 2012. The Kotaneelee field produced 235 billion cubic feet of natural gas for export, resulting in the collection of approximately $46 million in royalties.

Yukon’s involvement in the oil and gas industry isn’t new. Yukon has been a contributor in the past and we want to be a contributor in the future.


Learn more about the history of oiland gas in Yukon

Questions or comments? Contact us: 

Oil and Gas Resources
Phone: 867.393.7042
Toll-free: 1.800.661.0408 ext. 7042