Department of Environment

Yukon Ecological & Landscape Classification Program

Fireweed blooming with mountains in the background

View or download the Yukon Ecological and Landscape Classification (ELC) Program Five-Year Strategic Plan from our projects & initiatives page.


Program partners

Defining ecosystem types in a classification and then mapping where they are allows us to improve our understanding of landscape diversity and ecosystem function.

The Yukon government has established the Ecosystem and Landscape Classification (ELC) program within Environment Yukon.

What we do

The ELC system provides biologists, land use planners, and wildlife managers with:

Key indicators such as elevation, soil conditions, weather patterns, and vegetation are used to classify ecological communities.

Detailed data is collected within each community to better understand the community’s importance to wildlife and sensitivity to human activity.

ELC brings a cross section of people with experience across several disciplines to a common table, where views and knowledge are shared and coordinated. We focus on understanding drivers and mechanisms that build functional ecosystem at various different scales.

Technical Working Group 

A Technical Working Group assists with the development and documentation of ecological and landscape classification and mapping methodology, protocols and standards. The group comprises technical experts from government agencies and scientific advisors from the consulting community.

Yukon Ecosystem and Landscape Classification and Mapping Guidelines

The Department of Environment has released their Yukon Ecosystem and Landscape Classification (ELC) and Mapping Guidelines.

The guidelines were developed as a means to support a consistent, Yukon-specific approach to ecosystem classification and mapping. They present a common ELC framework specific to Yukon landscapes and vegetation. This supports land and resource management and fosters better coordination between resource sectors and managers.

Hard copies of the guidelines can be requested through


Ecological & Land Classification Program

Environment Yukon

Government of Yukon

Box 2703 (V-2)
Whitehorse, Yukon
Canada Y1A 2C6

Phone: 867-667-3081
Toll free (in Yukon): 1-800-661-0408 local 3081
Fax: 867-393-6213