American Association of Petroleum Geologists

AAPG - an International Organization

September 8-10, 2002 • Stavanger, Norway

Sponsored by AAPG Research Committee

Conference Conveners

Sigrunn Johnsen
P.O. Box 243 Skoyen
0213 Oslo, Norway
Ph.: 47-21-30-3034
Fax: 47-21-30-3099

David Roberts
BP Exploration Operating Co. Ltd.
Building 200, Chertsey Road
Sunbury on Thames, Middlesex TW16 7LN
United Kingdom
Ph.: 44-1932-760-291
Fax: 44-1932-764-552

Hydrocarbon Habitat of Volcanic Rifted Passive Margins

Review Abstracts

The past two decades of research by academic and exploration by the oil industry have demonstrated two types of passive margins characterised by the presence or absence of voluminous volcanism. Passive margins distinguished by an absence of volcanism include the Bay of Biscay and Western Iberia. However, passive margins characterised by widespread flood basalt volcanism during and after rifting appear to be more widespread.

The early Tertiary margin off Western Norway is a type example of such a margin and it is appropriate therefore to convene a research conference on this topic in Norway. Indeed, a substantial body of research has been undertaken on this subject by Norwegian universities and oil companies to assess its influence on the hydrocarbon habitat of offshore mid-Norway.

However, exploration on such margins is international in scope. Prolific hydrocarbon provinces associated with volcanic passive margins include deepwater Angola, the Campos Basin and the Bombay High area.

Key questions to be addressed during the conference include:

  • the nature of the continent-ocean transition and its influence on heat flow;
  • structural segmentation along margins and its influence on basin architecture;
  • the thermal effects of transient underplating of the lower crust;
  • subsidence history and its impact on early post-rift history — why are some margins characterised by early post-rift salt and others not;
  • what controls the distribution of source beds on such margins. Especially important will be comparison of the different petroleum systems identified on such margins.


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