July 31, 2012
USGS Oil and Gas Assessment from Eastern United States
"The assessment of the East Coast Mesozoic basins is based on the geologic and geochemical characteristics of the individual total petroleum systems (TPS) that were recognized within the basins. For the petroleum source rock, the characteristics include the source rock richness, thermal maturation, timing of petroleum generation, and migration; for the reservoir rocks and seals, they include their stratigraphic position and content and petrophysical properties. Using this gasgeologic framework, the USGS defined a composite TPS and an assessment unit (AU) for continuous accumulations in each of the 14 major East Coast Mesozoic rift basins. The basins are present both onshore and offshore (in State-administered waters) of the Eastern United States. The USGS quantitatively assessed the technically recoverable, undiscovered resources within five of the total petroleum systems and associated assessment units that demonstrated the most potential for generating and accumulating hydrocarbons. Several assessment units appear to contain continuous accumulations of gas, within both the shale and coal source rocks and within the adjacent coarser grained, siliciclastic strata. Small amounts of oil and petroliferous hydrocarbons, such as asphalt, have been detected in some of the wells drilled in these basins. For the total of the continuous resources, the USGS estimated a mean of 3,860 billion cubic feet of gas and a mean of 135 million barrels of natural gas liquids (table 1). The available data indicate that, of the five basins that were quantitatively assessed, the Deep River, Taylorsville, and South Newark basins appear to possess the potential to produce the most hydrocarbons."
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