2014 Rocky Mountain Section AAPG Annual Meeting

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New Concept of Oil and Gas Origin


Oil and gas genesis (or origin) is an important scientific problem. The question of oil and gas origin, disputed between supporters of organic and inorganic theories, has not been resolved during the last one hundred years. The organic hypothesis identify oil and gas origin from remains of buried dead organisms, while the inorganic hypothesis argues hydrocarbons are formed from hydrogen and carbon coming from depth of the Earth. However, now there is a further concept. Integration of numerous empirical data has led to the conclusion that oil and gas formation is not only a lengthy geological process as with the organic or inorganic theories but rather a natural phenomenon dependent on geochemical circulation of movable carbon and water through the earth's surface (biospheric concept). As a result, the biospheric concept scientifically substantiates that oil and gas are ‘renewable’ mineral resource. A key provision of biospheric concept is polycondensation (abiogenic) synthesis of gas and oil hydrocarbons in the earth's crust with involvement of meteoric waters. Our study in the late 80's presented the possible mechanism of water circulation under temperature change (positive or negative thermodynamic gradient of pore pressure) during the climatic circulation process in the interior of the earth's crust and the impact of this phenomenon on many geological and geochemical processes, including migration and accumulation of hydrocarbons. To investigate and prove these concepts authors completed specialized experiments, whose findings and more importantly the consequences, as they apply to the scientific and applied fields, are very interesting. Experiments have shown that the formation of hydrogen and hydrocarbons from H2O and CO2 is active in the sedimentary rocks, even at atmospheric pressure and room temperature. This identified process explains, in particular, the replenishment phenomenon of oil and gas reserves at a number of developed fields, changes in chemical composition of oil and the scale of modern degasation of hydrogen, methane and carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Among other applications, it also enables the authors to offer patented technologies for production of hydrogen and hydrocarbons from water and CO2 in either aboveground or subsurface conditions. These make it possible to reduce the expected problems of energy and environmental crises, specifically by utilizing carbon dioxide (CO2) as a working agent.