Protect heritage resources during land development and mining

  • Project planning
  • Resources for proponents and field workers
  • Request heritage site data
  • If you find an archaeological site during development
  • Position statement

  1. Project planning

    Make sure you know what heritage resources are in a development area. Then, plan your project to have smallest impact to archaeological and historic sites.

    Heritage resources include:

    • fossil remains of plants and animals;
    • archaeological artifacts and historic structures such as cabins, caches, graves; and
    • other human-made structures, features or objects that have been abandoned and are more than 45 years old.

    Much of Yukon has never been surveyed for heritage sites. Areas under application for quartz and placer mining licences may contain undocumented heritage resources.

    For information on heritage resources in a specific project area, email or phone 867-667-3771 or toll-free 1-800-661-0408 ext. 3771.

  2. Resources for proponents and field workers


    Read our field guide to help identify heritage sites you may come across during work or recreation.

    Learn what to do if you find an archaeological or heritage site.

    Acts and regulations

    Heritage resources in Yukon are protected from disturbance under the:

    You can't disturb, or remove any artifacts from, an archaeological site without a permit.

    YESAA and heritage resource protection

    Your project may need a Yukon Environmental Socioeconomic Assessment Act (YESAA) review. If so, assessors may recommend that you avoid known heritage resources in the project area. They may also recommend that you do any of the following:

    • a heritage resources overview assessment;
    • a heritage resources inventory;
    • a heritage resources impact assessment; and
    • mitigation.

    This work will become part of the terms and conditions of mine licensing. You may need help from a professional archaeological consultant to complete these requirements.

    Heritage assessment involving fieldwork can only happen when the ground is thawed and free of snow. Plan assessments in advance. Contact the Yukon Archaeology Program at or 867-667-3771, or toll-free: 1-800-661-0408 ext. 3771.

  3. Request heritage site data

    Heritage resource sites, and access to information about them, are protected by legislation in Yukon. The Yukon Archaeological Sites Inventory contains records for "known" or recorded heritage resources sites.

    Request information on a particular site.

    1. Download the licence agreement and guidelines.
    2. Fill out "Schedule A" of the form and submit it.
      Mail: Government of Yukon
      Heritage Resources (L-2A)
      Box 2703
      Whitehorse, Yukon Y1A 2C6
    3. We will review your request and contact you with the results.
    4. We will release any existing archaeological data for your study area after you submit an original copy of the signed:
      • Licence Agreement; and
      • "Schedule A".

    For questions about this process or about the inventory, contact the senior projects archaeologist by emailing or phone: 867-667-5983 or toll free in Yukon: 1-800-661-0408 ext. 5983.

  4. If you find an archaeological site during development

    If you find an archaeological site during a land development project, stop work at the location immediately. Report the site to the Yukon Archaeology Program. If you're on Settlement Land, report the site to the First Nation.

    No artifacts may be removed from an archaeological site without a permit.

    Archaeological sites are protected from disturbance under the Archaeological Site Regulation and the Yukon Historic Resources Act.

  5. Position statement

    We preserve and protect historic resources identified in:

    Our position statement outlines the objectives to achieve this goal.