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Tools to Evaluate the Hydrocarbon Potential of the Mesozoic Basins, North Carolina, USA

Jeffrey C. Previous HitReidTop and Kenneth B. Taylor
North Carolina Geological Survey, 1612 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, North Carolina 27699-1612, jeff.reid@ncmail.net, 919.733.2423 x403

The North Carolina Geological Survey (NCGS) has compiled a comprehensive data package of public records to evaluate the hydrocarbon potential of on-shore Mesozoic basins in North Carolina. This will provide industry with a consistent data entry point.

The data include organic geochemistry; seismic lines; well locations – well cuttings, core samples and logs; other geophysical data; and permitting information. State and federal digital geologic maps provide a geologic framework.

Organic geochemistry shows source rocks are oil and gas prone. TOC are above the lower limit of 0.4 wt.% required before hydrocarbon can be expelled from source rocks. Elevated thermal maturity is from intrusive Jurassic dikes and sills.

About 75 line-miles of seismic (1980’s vintage) are located in Lee, Moore, Chatham and Wake Counties – all with base maps and shot point locations. Original data tapes were recovered and efforts are underway to preserve the data. Seismic interpretation is in progress.

Twenty-eight wells were drilled in the Mesozoic basins –including locations, well logs, core and cuttings, and organic chemistry. NCGS data include hydrocarbon test wells that penetrated basement under the Coastal Plan overlap.

Supplemental information includes: LiDAR, digital base- and tax maps, and recent aerial photographs. Airborne geophysical data includes magnetics and gravity – supplemented by theses and guidebook information.

Existing general state statutes and rules cover permitting on-shore, seismic data acquisition with explosives, confidentiality, production rules, drilling and application fees. Sedimentation and erosion control permits are needed for any activity that disturbs more than one acre of land. Pre-permit application meetings are suggested.

Presented AAPG Eastern Section Meeting, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 2008 © AAPG Eastern Section