Zechstein 2 (Z2) carbonate microbialites flourished under arid paleoclimatic conditions in the Late Permian. Microbial carbonates from the Roker Formation outcrop in northeast England, with its subsurface equivalent being the Main Dolomite from northwest–central Poland. The Z2 carbonate deposits developed in supratidal through deep subtidal zones and consist of various stromatolites and thrombolites. Planar stromatolites and thrombolites characterize intertidal and supratidal facies, and biohermal stromatolites with oolitic grainstone and crinkled stromatolites typify shallow subtidal facies. The Z2 subtidal and/or intertidal microbialites with oolites form complexes more than 10 m (33 ft) thick and are important reservoir facies for hydrocarbons. Subtidal (slope) and intertidal (lagoonal) microbial mudstone and wackestone have poor reservoir properties but contain total organic carbon as much as 2 wt. % and are considered as potential source rocks. The thermal maturity assessed from C27 17α-trisnorhopane (Tm) and C27 18α-trisnorhopane (Ts) as the Ts/(Ts + Tm) ratio, C30 moretane/hopane ratio, sterane ratio expressed as 20S/(20S + 20R), and ββ/(ββ + αα) ratio shows to indicates a mature character of organic matter with respect to oil generation.

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