Mining, economic diversification and innovation elevates all Yukoners

The Yukon Liberal Party is committed to continuing to foster a strong and diverse economy while also supporting existing industries.

Yukon’s economy is strong, even while tackling a global pandemic. This is not by coincidence; it is due to the resilient Yukon business community and in large part to the Yukon Liberal team’s ongoing efforts in diversification, innovation and recognizing mining as an essential service. Since 2016, Yukon has seen economic growth every year, our unemployment has frequently been the lowest in the country, and retail sales have increased significantly.

Partnerships in this industry are vital. If re-elected, we will continue to develop a policy for mining in municipalities that promotes sustainable development and respects community plans and values. We want all voices at the table.

We succeeded in gaining alignment with First Nations governments to proceed with regulatory amendments to the Yukon Environmental and Socio-economic Assessment Act (YESAA). A re-elected Yukon Liberal government will maintain work with all levels of government to press on with these amendments, which will result in a more streamlined assessment process.

If re-elected, the Yukon Liberal Party will:

  • Continue to collaborate with major industry partners to ensure they have local-purchase programs to work with Yukon businesses wherever possible. Yukoners need to be at the centre on these conversations.
  • Support junior mining companies operating in the Yukon through the creation of a Mineral Exploration Fund.
  • Carefully analyze the recommendations of the independent Mineral Development Strategy panel and incorporate their views into the final strategy.

Additionally, we know strength comes from diversification. We have supported community organizations to develop capacity in emerging energy technologies, such as a biomass district heating system in Teslin. Now is the time to take this a step further and build a biomass plant for the Yukon.

We also plan to use wood salvaged in fuel breaks to heat local buildings, transitioning 10 large buildings to biomass by 2025. We support implementing sustainable biomass systems across the territory to help advance the Yukon’s green economy and safeguard Yukoners’ bottom lines for years to come.

The Yukon also needs new, innovative ideas to continue its economic growth. That’s why we opened the NorthLight Innovation Hub along with our partners, Yukonstruct, Yukon University, and the federal government. Going forward, we commit to continuing to expand opportunities by releasing an innovation strategy that will create opportunities for local entrepreneurs. We will also establish an Innovation Commission to attract new technology startups and fuel the Yukon’s digital ecosystem.

“Before the previous election, the Yukon was down to one operating mine, and lawsuits had significantly damaged our investment climate. Now, three mines have opened in the last four years and we are well on our way to an even stronger, more responsible backbone for our economy. And let’s not forget, our green economy is also a ripe focus for our government, a still-emerging area that brings opportunities for local innovation and startups.”

- Ranj Pillai, Liberal candidate for Porter Creek South

“My husband Peter and I were placer miners in the Gold Fields of Dawson City for more than 12 years. I know firsthand the value of this sector to the territory and to Yukoners. We have a responsibility to honour our unique history by continuing to work closely with community and industry partners, stakeholders, and First Nations to increase regulatory clarity and recognize the importance of land use planning.”

- Tracey Jacobs, Liberal candidate for Lake Laberge