The Yukon government has offered up a huge swath of territory in the Eagle Plains basin for oil and gas exploration.

The government says it carefully considered environmental and socio-economic impacts before making the call for bids.

"After the conclusion of public consultation we had additional government-to-government discussion with the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation," said Brad Cathers, minister of energy mines and resources.

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Brad Cathers, Yukon minister of energy mines and resources, says the public and Vuntut Gwichin First Nation government were consulted before the call for bids was issued. (CBC)

"We understand the importance of that activity within their tradional territory both in terms of economic activities and the importance of protecting the environment."

The two areas up for grabs are located west of the Yukon border, about mid-way between Old Crow, Yukon, and Fort McPherson, N.W.T. They total 730 square kilometres, and were identified by industry earlier this year.

The company that promises to spend the most gets awarded the oil and gas rights for that location. Bidding closes Aug. 2.

All exploration projects are subject to review by the Yukon Environmental and Socio-Economic Assessment Board.