Abstract

Diagenetic analysis based on cathodoluminescence petrography, cement stratigraphy, carbon and oxygen stable isotope geochemistry, and fluid inclusion microthermometry was used to reconstruct the porosity history and evaluate the reservoir potential of the Upper Silurian–Lower Devonian West Point limestone in the eastern part of the Gaspé Belt. The West Point limestone was investigated in two areas:

1) In the Chaleurs Bay Synclinorium, the limestone diagenesis of the lower and middle complexes of the Silurian West Point Formation was affected by repeated subaerial exposure related to late Ludlovian third-order eustatic low-stands, which coincided with the Salinic block tilting that produced the Salinic unconformity. The Anse McInnis Member (middle bank complex) underwent freshwater dissolution, and mixed marine and freshwater cementation during deposition. Concurrently, the underlying Anse à la Barbe and Gros Morbe members (lower mound and reef complex) experienced dissolution by fresh water percolating throughout the limestone succession. Despite this early development of karst porosity, subsequent meteoric-influenced cementation rapidly occluded all remaining pore space in the Gros Morbe, Anse à la Barbe, and Anse McInnis limestones. In contrast, the overlying Colline Daniel Member limestone (upper reef complex) does not show the influence of any freshwater diagenesis. Occlusion of its primary porosity occurred during progressive burial and was completed under a maximum burial depth of 1.2 kin.

2) In the Northern Outcrop Belt, the diagenesis of the Devonian pinnacle reefs of the West Point Formation followed a progressive burial trend. The primary pores of the reef limestone were not completely occluded before the reefs were buried at a significant depth (in some cases, to 6 km). Therefore, hydrocarbon migration in subsurface buildups before primary porosity occlusion might have created reservoirs. Moreover, the presence of gaseous hydrocarbons in Acadian-related veins attests to a hydrocarbon source in the area.

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