Petroleum geology and resources in West Africa: An overview

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The passive continental margin of West Africa is becoming an attractive area for hydrocarbon exploration, and it experienced four tectonic stages, i.e. pre-rift, syn-rift, transitional and post-rift (drifting) stages. The syn-rift and post-rift stages deposited deep lacustrine hydrocarbon sources and marine hydrocarbon sources of anoxic sediment, respectively, and the transitional stage deposited very thick evaporate rocks, which are very important for forming large traps. The outer basins in the passive margin are the main hydrocarbon-producers in West Africa. Several large rivers formed huge deltas and turbid fans such as Niger Delta, Congo Fan, Kwanza Fan, which contributed large amount of petroleum. Niger Delta and Lower Congo Basin are the most attractive areas in West Africa; Gabon Basin's and Rio Muni Basin's remained hydrocarbon resources are limited and the key problem is to find new targets; The exploration in the Kwanza Basin's deep sea is rare and has a certain risk. © 2008 Research Institute of Petroleum Exploration & Development, PetroChina.




LIU, J. P., PAN, X. hua, MA, J., TIAN, Z. ji, CHEN, Y. jin, & WAN, L. kun. (2008). Petroleum geology and resources in West Africa: An overview. Petroleum Exploration and Development, 35(3), 378–384.

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