Company announces Yukon fracking plans

An oil and gas company wants to frack in the Yukon in the next year or two. EFL Overseas Inc. presented to investors in February its plans to expand natural gas production in the Kotaneelee gas fields of southeast Yukon.

An oil and gas company wants to frack in the Yukon in the next year or two.

EFL Overseas Inc. presented to investors in February its plans to expand natural gas production in the Kotaneelee gas fields of southeast Yukon.

By the end of 2015 the company plans to spend at least $48 million to develop three shale gas wells.

Production of shale gas has ballooned over the last decade thanks to hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, technology. It involves pumping a huge amount of water, sand and chemicals down wells in order to break apart the rock and release the natural gas trapped inside.

The company estimates there is a potential resource in the Kotaneelee of up to 13 trillion cubic feet of shale gas.

But the government confirmed again yesterday that no licences to frack in the territory will be granted until a review of the process has been completed.

“The goal of the government is to facilitate and inform public dialogue about the oil and gas industry, including risks and benefits of hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking, before any regulatory approvals or permitting allows the use of this activity in Yukon,” said Currie Dixon, minister for the environment and for economic development.

Dixon is one of six MLAs who will form a committee to review fracking.

Government approval will not be the only barrier EFL Overseas faces in its plans to frack the Yukon.

Its gas fields fall in Kaska traditional territory, and the Kaska do not want to see fracking in the southwest Yukon.

“It is quite concerning at this point given the Government of the Yukon’s conduct,” said Chief Liard McMillan of the Liard First Nation, speaking to the company’s plans in the region.

The Kaska announced in the fall that they will oppose any oil and gas or mineral development on their territory where the company does not have an agreement with the First Nation.

In December the government removed the Kaska’s veto power over development from the Oil and Gas Act. But McMillan insists that right to consent still exists.

The First Nation has contacted EFL Overseas and informed them of their duty to gain the consent of the Kaska to work in the area, he said.

“The veto remains in place, and we’ve announced a full moratorium and mining development in the southeast, and we will enforce that veto,” said McMillan. “Those companies that want to do business in the southeast Yukon should talk to the Kaska and seek their consent before any development.”

Contact Jacqueline Ronson at

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A proposed Official Community Plan amendment would designate a 56.3-hectare piece of land in Whistle Bend currently designated as green space, as urban residential use. Whitehorse city council will vote on the second reading of the Official Community Plan amendment on Dec. 7. (Courtesy City of Whitehorse)
Future area of Whistle Bend considered by council

Members set to vote on second reading for OCP change

The City of Whitehorse’s projected deficit could be $100,000 more than originally predicted earlier this year. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
City deficit could be just over $640,000 this year

Third quarter financial reports presented to council

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley speaks during a COVID-19 press conference in Whitehorse on Oct. 30. Masks became mandatory in the Yukon for anyone five years old and older as of Dec. 1 while in public spaces. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
As mask law comes into effect, premier says $500 fines will be last resort

The territory currently has 17 active cases of COVID-19

Crystal Schick/Yukon News file
Ranj Pillai, minister of economic development, during a press conference on April 1.
Government rejects ATAC mining road proposal north of Keno City

Concerns from the First Nation of Na-Cho Nyäk Dun were cited as the main reason for the decision


Wyatt’s World for Dec. 2, 2020

The new Little Salmon Carmacks First Nation council elected Dec. 1. (Submitted)
Little Salmon Carmacks elects new chief, council

Nicole Tom elected chief of Little Salmon Carcmacks First Nation

Submitted/Yukon News file
Yukon RCMP’s Historical Case Unit is seeking information related to the unsolved homicide of Allan Donald Waugh, 69, who was found deceased in his house on May 30, 2014.
Yukon RCMP investigating unsolved Allan Waugh homicide

Yukon RCMP’s Historical Case Unit is seeking information related to an unsolved… Continue reading

A jogger runs along Millenium Trail as the sun rises over the trees around 11 a.m. in Whitehorse on Dec. 12, 2018. The City of Whitehorse could soon have a new trail plan in place to serve as a guide in managing the more than 233 kilometres of trails the city manages. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
2020 trail plan comes forward

Policies and bylaws would look at e-mobility devices

Snow-making machines are pushed and pulled uphill at Mount Sima in 2015. The ski hill will be converting snow-making to electric power with more than $5 million in funding from the territorial and federal governments. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
Mount Sima funded to cut diesel reliance

Mount Sima ski hill is converting its snowmaking to electric power with… Continue reading

Colin McDowell, the director of land management for the Yukon government, pulls lottery tickets at random during a Whistle Bend property lottery in Whitehorse on Sept. 9, 2019. A large amount of lots are becoming available via lottery in Whistle Bend as the neighbourhood enters phase five of development. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Lottery for more than 250 new Whistle Bend lots planned for January 2021

Eight commercial lots are being tendered in additional to residential plots

The Government of Yukon Main Administration Building in Whitehorse on Aug. 21. The Canada Border Services Agency announced Nov. 26 that they have laid charges against six people, including one Government of Yukon employee, connected to immigration fraud that involved forged Yukon government documents. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Charges laid in immigration fraud scheme, warrant out for former Yukon government employee

Permanent residency applications were submitted with fake Yukon government documents

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Mask fundraiser helps make children’s wishes come true

From Black Press Media + BraveFace – adult, youth and kid masks support Make-A-Wish Foundation

Whitehorse City Hall. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
City hall, briefly

A look at decisions made by Whitehorse city council this week

Most Read