Datapages, Inc.Print this page

Abstract: Making Proprietary Data Public to Help Stimulate Industry Interest and Academic Research: An Example from Offshore Southern California


In 1996 the Minerals Management Service(MMS) purchased complete ownership rights to approximately 300 line-miles of high-quality common-depth-point data in the Oceanside basin offshore southern California. MMS' intent in purchasing such rights is to release these data to the public, 17 years before the regulatory expiration of their proprietary term. The reason is to help stimulate oil industry interest in an offshore area that MMS believes has high hydrocarbon potential. Additionally, MMS hopes to stimulate academic research for earthquake hazard analyses and for paleotectonic studies of the Southern California Borderland. These data will be available to the public in the spring of 1997.

The Oceanside basin is an asymmetrical structural trough filled with up to 11,000 feet of Paleogene and Neogene marine and nonmarine clastic rocks. The basin is approximately 50 miles long and averages 15 miles in width. Water depths within the basin range from 300 to 3,000 feet. The Newport-Inglewood fault zone lies along the eastern edge of the basin and has created a number of northwest trending anticlinal structures; these structures are large enough to contain significant quantities of oil and gas. This structural trend has major significance since this is the same structural trend from which many of the prolific Newport-Inglewood fields of the Los Angeles basin produce. Recently, MMS completed a hydrocarbon assessment of the Oceanside basin as part of the 1995 Assessment of U.S. Oil and Gas Resources; as a result of this assessment the basin is expected to contain over 1 billion barrels of conventionally recoverable oil and 1.3 billion cubic feet of conventionally recoverable gas.

Search and Discovery Article #90945©1997 AAPG Pacific Section Meeting, Bakersfield, California