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Salt Basins of Western Europe and Gabon, West Africa: Which is a Gulf of Mexico Analog?

THOMPSON, D. A., ARCO Oil and Gas Company, Dallas, TX, I. LERCHE, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC, and J. J. O'BRIEN, Standard Alaska Petroleum Company, Anchorage, AK

This paper presents data that have been compiled concerning the distribution and morphology of salt in two selected basins, together with information on hydrocarbon production. These data are analyzed in terms of salt tectonic models and lead to a better understanding of the relationships between various types of salt structures and hydrocarbon accumulations-in particular, how they relate to Gulf Coast salt and hydrocarbons. Analysis of the spatial separation of salt walls and of the relationship of critical depth of sediment necessary to cause buoyancy of the salt suggests that the Zechstein salt has been essentially autochthonous since deposition, while the Gabon salt is manifestly allochthonous in character. Relation of the salt accumulations to hydrocarbon fields is also made, lea ing to contrasting patterns of association, and nonassociation, of hydrocarbons with salt in the Gabon and western Europe areas, respectively.


AAPG Search and Discovery Article #91006 © 1991 GCAGS and GC-SEPM Meeting, Houston, Texas, October 16-18, 1991 (2009)