Abstract

In the northern Davis Strait to southernmost Baffin Bay area, offshore West Greenland, deep basins with Mesozoic and Cenozoic sedimentary successions occur and a number of large structures and closures at likely reservoir levels have been found. Mid-Cretaceous, Upper Cretaceous and Paleocene sand-rich deposits are well known onshore east of the study area and in offshore wells, and equivalent deposits may also be present in the structures. Some of the potential structural leads have thick seals of late Cretaceous–Cenozoic deposits and short distances to deep possible kitchens with mid-Cretaceous and Paleocene source rocks, which mainly came into the oil window during the Neogene. Onshore oil seeps and gas shows, together with amplitude anomalies from seismic data, such as possible bright spots, support a live petroleum system in the region. During Early to mid-Cretaceous time a number of large structures and basins formed as a result of extensional faulting, including the Kangerluk Structure, the Aasiaat Structural Trend, structures in the Aasiaat and Sisimiut basins, and in the Nagssugtôq Sub-basin. A period with less tectonic activity followed in the Late Cretaceous, with deposition of thick, basinal mudstone-dominated successions. In the Late Cretaceous to Early Paleocene renewed tectonic activity caused uplift and faulting of large structures, such as the Davis Strait High and partly the Kangerluk Structure. Late Paleocene to Early Eocene strike-slip movements created thrust faults and compressional structures, mainly in the Ikermiut Fault Zone, associated with formation of the Ikermiut Basin. During the Paleocene and mainly the Early Eocene the >200 km long Ilulissat Graben developed. Paleocene and Eocene basalts occur west of Disko and Nuussuaq and narrow in distribution further south. The basalt cover offshore may be more limited than believed earlier. The area was offered for licensing in two periods from 2006 to early 2008.

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