Abstract

We analyzed oils, gases, and bitumens of bottom sediments from natural shows on the southeastern shore of Lake Baikal, in the mouth of the Stvolovaya River near Capes Tolstyi and Gorevoi Utes. Based on a set of geological data, we have established that: (1) the lake oils underwent biodegradation to a variable degree: “Fresh” nondegraded paraffin oil floats up near Cape Gorevoi Utes; in the mouth of the Stvolovaya River and near Cape Tolstyi, aromatic-naphthene oil lacks n-alkanes, monomethyl alkanes, and acyclic isoprenoids; (2) Cenozoic oil originated from the organic matter of fresh-water basins with significant amounts of higher land plant remains, including angiosperm plants (oleanane), which suggests the lake or delta genesis of oil source formations of Cretaceous and younger ages. Judging from the carbon isotope composition (average δ13C = −43.84‰), methane from the bottom sediments near Cape Gorevoi Utes is catagenetic. The initial in-place resources in the Baikal sedimentary basins are estimated by the volumetric-statistical method at 500 mln tons of equivalent hydrocarbons.

You do not currently have access to this article.