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The Application of Sequence Stratigraphic Models to Improve the Understanding of Cretaceous Petroleum Systems in West Greenland, the Labrador Sea and Baffin Bay

Kate C. Evans and Andrew Davies
Neftex Petroleum Consultants, Abingdon, United Kingdom.

West Greenland, the Labrador Sea and Baffin Bay are frontier regions for hydrocarbon exploration. Despite the paucity of data, active petroleum systems are known from a limited number of exploration wells yielding positive hydrocarbon shows together with a number of hydrocarbon seeps along the Canadian and Greenland margins. These hydrocarbons have been primarily tied to Cretaceous marine and terrestrial shales. By integrating outcrop and offshore data, significant insight can be generated with regards to previously untested areas. Furthermore, through the application of a global sequence stratigraphic model, we can begin to assess and predict petroleum system elements.

Prior to rifting in the Late Cretaceous - Early Palaeocene, this region had a common geological history. Therefore, a comparison of published data, using a regional context, can provide analogues for undrilled areas and can help aid the definition of reservoirs, source rock and seals.

Sequence stratigraphic models have the benefit of defining major stages of sand input around lowstand intervals and the deposition of finer-grained sediments around maximum flooding surfaces. Potential Cretaceous source rocks in this region have been penetrated in several wells, including the Umiivik borehole and Herjolf M-92, and are seen at outcrop in West Greenland. These sediments were deposited in a both marine and terrestrial environment during transgressive intervals. Viewing these data, together with reservoir and seal data, in a regional sequence stratigraphic context can aid future exploration and speculation will be made on likely productive plays.


AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90130©2011 3P Arctic, The Polar Petroleum Potential Conference & Exhibition, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, 30 August-2 September, 2011.