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Petroleum Geology of East Siberia

James W. Clarke

The unmetamorphosed geologic section of the East Siberian region consists of upper Proterozoic clastic and carbonate sediments; Cambrian evaporites, carbonates, and black shales; Ordovician to Permian clastic and carbonate sediments; Triassic basaltic flows and intrusives; and Jurassic and Cretaceous clastic sediments. During the Cambrian, a barrier reef extended across the region. Salt and anhydrite were deposited in the vast lagoon to the southwest behind this reef. The structure is typical of platforms; broad, gentle warps are complicated by smaller highs. The total area of East Siberia that is potentially favorable for oil and gas is 3.23 million km2 (1.24 million mi2).

Deposits in the Lena-Tunguska province are in stratigraphic traps in Proterozoic to Cambrian clastic and carbonate sediments sealed by Cambrian salt and in anticlinal structures in areas of salt tectonics. Source beds seem to be Proterozoic. Pools in the Khatanga-Vilyuy province are in anticlines in Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous clastic sedimentary rocks. Source beds are Permian carbonaceous shale. Most discoveries have been of gas; however, several fields have oil rings. The traps appear to have been filled by oil at one time.

Undiscovered recoverable petroleum resources of East Siberia are assessed, at 90% probability, within the range of 2.2-14.6 billion bbl of oil and 72-278 tcf of gas. Mean estimates are 7.3 billion bbl of oil and 158 tcf of gas, respectively. Gas-hydrate deposits in the Lena-Vilyuy province, where permafrost is more than 400 m thick, are estimated to contain 27 tcf of possibly recoverable gas.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #91043©1986 AAPG Annual Convention, Atlanta, Georgia, June 15-18, 1986.