Energy in Canada's North

2018-19 Activity Update – Petroleum Geosciences Group

Thursday, November 22, 2018 - 08:20 to 08:39 Theatre 2


K.M. Fiess (Presenting)
NWT Geological Survey

During Fiscal 2017-18, the Petroleum Geosciences Group at the Northwest Territories Geological Survey (NTGS) advanced work on four projects. These include the Shale Basin Evolution Project in the Central Northwest Territories (NWT), Petroleum Play Summaries, Conventional Marketable Gas Resource Mapping, and Petroleum Legislation Review. The purpose of this presentation is to review the work completed during Fiscal 2017-18 and the Petroleum Group 2018-19 work objectives.

The Shale Basin Evolution Project is a multi-year project initiated in 2014. Dr. Murray Gingras of the University of Alberta joined the research team in 2016 to help achieve the project goals and provide enhanced objectives. This project will provide an assessment of the reservoir quality of Middle to Upper Devonian age shale of the Central Mackenzie Valley, using sedimentological, ichnological, and geochemical parameters. Chemostratigraphic, biostratigraphic, and sedimentological data will be used to establish a basin-wide sequence stratigraphic framework for the Horn River Group shales. These shales include the Bluefish and Bell Creek members of the Hare Indian shale and the Canol Formation. Basin-wide outcrop, core, chip samples, and well log data collection and analysis are incorporated into the project work. Petroleum systems analysis software will also be used to conduct basin modeling studies using multiple Horn River Group shale datasets. Potential hydrocarbon generation history, migration models, resource volumes, and prospective trends will be evaluated. The team also conducted fieldwork along the western and southern edges of the Mackenzie Plain and Peel Plateau, respectively during Fiscal 2016-17 and 2018-19. The 2018-19 project work focuses on industry core and chip sample data from five recently drilled wells in the Central Mackenzie Valley and on recently acquired outcrop samples.

Petroleum Play Summaries are a hybrid product designed to provide petroleum industry explorationists with a summary of key technical parameters and basic mapping for known conventional or unconventional hydrocarbon plays in the NWT. The summaries are printed as pamphlets and primarily distributed at technical conferences. The Liard Unconventional Play Summary is nearly complete, and pamphlets should be available for distribution before the end of November 2018.

The Conventional Gas Resource Mapping Project was initiated last year to support an NTGS Strategic Plan objective ”… to provide geoscience knowledge as required to support community initiatives to develop local natural gas supplies for electricity generation.” To this end, a scoping level geoSCOUT project was completed to show the distribution of known natural gas resource volumes with respect to communities and existing pipeline and road infrastructure. A more comprehensive second phase of this project will be initiated in Fiscal 2018-19 to create publication quality maps, shapefiles, and metadata in an ArcGIS project. The results of the ArcGIS project will be made available as an NTGS Open Report by fiscal year-end.

A workgroup was formed in the fall of 2016 to review the Petroleum Resource Act and the Oil and Gas Operations Act and identify areas of the legislation in need of updating. The manager of the Petroleum Geosciences Group served as a subject matter expert on the team until February 2018.