Department of Community Services

Operations & Programs

Recycling in Yukon

Easy for you, easy on the environment

Yukon government is pleased to support recycling in the territory with amendments to the Beverage Container Regulation and Designated Materials Regulation.

The current Beverage Container Regulation and Designated Materials Regulation are in effect until September 30, 2017. The amended regulations for beverage containers and designated materials will come into effect on August 1, 2017.

What's new?

The Beverage Container Regulation applies surcharges and refunds on ready-to-serve beverages like juice and pop. The changes simplify the regulation and now include milk products and milk substitutes, like soy milk and rice milk.

The Designated Material Regulation was expanded to set surcharges on the sale of new tires, electronic and electrical products at the point of purchase in order to provide free collection and recycling of these products to Yukoners. This helps ensure that harmful products are not discarded into the environment.

When will these changes happen?

The Government of Yukon intends to postpone implementation of Yukon's amended recycling regulations until August 1, 2017 to provide additional discussion time with stakeholders. No new surcharges, refunds or tipping fees will be implemented at this time. Communication, like advertisements and news releases, will go out prior to implementation to announce when these changes will come into effect.

How do these changes make recycling more sustainable? What is the benefit?

Yukon government understands the importance of supporting increased waste diversion and recycling. This can be accomplished in different ways, but does come with significant costs. Recycling becomes more sustainable when the costs associated with responsible waste management are paid upfront, at the point of purchase.

Point of purchase surcharges are becoming the norm in Canada. These changes will bring Yukon up to date by implementing environmental surcharges that are comparable with those charged in other Canadian provinces and territories.

Depots will no longer charge tipping fees when you drop off any designated materials, like tires and computers.

All surcharges collected are deposited into Yukon’s Recycling Fund, a dedicated fund that is used to pay for the responsible management and recycling of these materials. The changes to recycling regulations will help work towards making recycling in Yukon more sustainable.

How do these changes affect me?

These changes will affect the surcharges you pay when you purchase certain products as well as the refund you can collect when you recycle ready-to-serve beverage containers, including milk and milk substitutes like soy milk and coconut milk.

Now that you pay a surcharge when you purchase designated materials like tires, electronics and electrical items, you will not be charged a tipping fee to drop it off at the depot or solid waste facility in your community.

Beverage Container Regulation

Changes to the regulation affect the surcharges and refunds applicable to all ready-to-serve beverage products, including milk and milk substitutes like soy milk and drinkable yogurt. The regulation was also simplified. Now, all beverage containers fall into two categories:

Designated Material Regulation

Changes to the regulation apply point of purchase surcharges on all tires as well as electronics and electrical products (see the tables below). The surcharge amounts are based on similar surcharges across Canada as well as actual costs associated with hauling and recycling.



17 inches and smaller


18 to 22 inches


Greater than 22 inches




Electronic Products


Desktop computer


Portable computer/tablet


Computer accessories (keyboard, mouse, etc)


Desktop printers, fax machines, copier equipment


Display screen 29 inches and more


Display screen less than 29 inches


Home audio/video (DVD player, stereo, etc)


Personal audio/video (MP3 player, Discman, etc)


Phone (cellular and non-cellular)


Vehicle audio/video




Electrical Products


Kitchen countertop appliances (blender, toaster, etc)


Microwave ovens


Time and weight measurement devices (clocks, scales, etc)


Garment and personal care devices (iron, hair dryer, etc)


Air purifier, fan


Large floor vacuum


Small handheld vacuum



Are surcharges applied to items purchased online or outside the territory?

Yes. Yukon government is establishing an agreement with the Electronic Products Recycling Association (EPRA) to make sure that surcharges are collected from all retailers, including online retailers. EPRA is active across Canada and more than 7,000 retailers are currently registered with the association.

Other Canadian jurisdictions already have similar regulations and surcharges in place. When Yukoners purchase items like phones or computers in British Columbia or Alberta, they are paying an environmental surcharge to the provincial government. The changes to Yukon's regulations ensure that recycling surcharges are kept within the territory to fund recycling initiatives.

As a retailer, how do these changes affect me and my business?

These changes affect the businesses that bring these products into the territory for sale.

In Yukon, that could be the retailer (the store owner who travels outside the territory, purchases the product, and then brings it back to Yukon to sell), the distributor (the company that sells these products to be sold in stores within the territory), or the manufacturer (the company that both creates these products and then sells these products to be sold in stores within the territory). Businesses that bring these products in to the territory for sale will be required to register and remit surcharges to Yukon government.

We are working closely with the business community to ensure this transition is easy and effective. We are meeting with industry representatives, providing information and have delayed the implementation of these regulations to provide additional preparation time for businesses.

How did the government decide on the surcharge/refund amounts and which products to include?

The Government of Yukon conducted extensive consultations with the public and stakeholders before amending these regulations.

The surcharge amounts were developed specifically for Yukon, based on current tipping fees at depots and similar surcharges in other Canadian jurisdictions.

The products captured under the Recycling Regulations were identified based on the following considerations:

  • Beverage containers can be recycled into new containers and refunds on these containers help prevent roadside litter
  • Used tires take up valuable landfill space when stored in piles above ground, provide a perfect breeding ground for mosquitos and are serious fire hazards
  • Electronic and electrical products are one of the fastest growing components of the waste stream and often contain hazardous chemicals and valuable components that can be reused

What do I do with my beverage containers and designated materials (tires, electronics and electrical items)?

All beverage containers should be recycled at your local depot or recycling centre. These changes affect some refund amounts but, overall, increase the number of items (such as milk and milk substitutes) for which you can collect a refund.

Tires can be dropped off at depots and/or solid waste facilities. All other designated materials should be brought to your local solid waste facility at the end of the product's life. The changes mean that you will no longer have to pay a tipping fee for these items.

Where do these materials go?

All beverage containers from across Yukon are transported to Whitehorse, along with other recyclable materials. The two recycling processors in Whitehorse receive funding from Yukon government to help them find a market for these items outside of the territory. For more information on where Yukon’s recycling goes once it leaves the territory, we encourage you to contact the processors directly.

All designated materials from across Yukon are safely collected and stored at depots and solid waste facilities. Yukon government then pays for transportation to a registered facility in western Canada or the United States. This contract is awarded through a public tendering process to ensure it is fair and that the contractor works within established social and environmental laws.

I have more questions ... who can I talk to?

If you have any more questions about these new changes or how they affect you, make sure you continue to visit this site, as it will be updated with new information as it becomes available. You can also email us at