Regional Geoscience Studies and Petroleum Potential of the Peel Plateau and Plain, Northwest Territories & Yukon

Regions: Gwich'in Settlement Area, Sahtu Settlement Area

Tags: physical sciences, geological mapping, geology, hydrocarbon exploration, petroleum industry

Principal Investigator: Zantvoort, Willem (1)
Licence Number: 14223
Organization: Northwest Territories Geoscience Office (NTGO)
Licenced Year(s): 2007 2006 2005
Issued: Aug 01, 2007
Project Team: Dr. Leanne Pyle Co-Leader (Research Scientist, Geological Survey of Canada), Willem Zantvoort (Sedimentologist, NWT Geoscience Office), Dr. Yvon Lemieux ( Research Scientist , Geological Survey of Canada ), Len Gal (Petroleum Geologist, NWT Geoscience Office), Dr. Thomas Hadlari (Stratigrapher, NWT Geoscience Office ), TBA (field assistants, NWT Geoscience Office/Universities ), Adrienne Jones Co-Leader (Coordinator, Petroleum Geoscience, NWT Geoscience Office ), Luke Ootes (Metalogenist, NWT Geoscience Office )

Objective(s): Peel Plateau and Plain, an area with hydrocarbon potential spanning the NWT-Yukon border, lies southwest of the Mackenzie River, north of the Mackenzie Mountains, and east of the Richardson Mountains. A primary objective of this project is to expand geoscience knowledge about this region.

Project Description: Peel Plateau and Plain, an area with hydrocarbon potential spanning the NWT-Yukon border, lies southwest of the Mackenzie River, north of the Mackenzie Mountains, and east of the Richardson Mountains. A primary objective of this project is to expand geoscience knowledge to aid in informed land use decisions, as well as stimulate petroleum exploration, industry investment, and economic development for the benefit of Northerners.

The Peel Region has widespread hydrocarbon potential yet is under-explored and its geological history is poorly understood. Much of the bedrock mapping and drilling dates back to the 1960's. More than 70 exploratory wells have been drilled here. Some of these had encouraging hydrocarbon shows, yet no major discoveries have been reported. The primary objective of this new multidisciplinary, collaborative four-year project "Regional Geoscience Studies and Petroleum Potential of the Peel Plateau and Plain, NWT & Yukon" is to improve knowledge of regional geology, including stratigraphy and correlation, depositional and tectonic histories, basin evolution, and petroleum geology and potential. The project is seamless across teh NWT-YT border and utilizes the expertise of partners in the Geological Survey of Canada, NWT Geoscience Office, Yukon Geological Survey, universities, northern communities, and industry.

Two geological teams of 3-4 people (headed by Gal and Zantvoort, respectively) will be carrying out field work in Peel Region. The teams will be fly camping the first two weeks of July in the Mackenzie Mountains. Work will be by helicopter out of Norman Wells on a daily basis for the last two weeks in July 2007 to look at the exposed rocks on ridges of the Mackenzie Mountain front and in river valleys; the teams will be set out for the day and picked up in the evening. There may also be sections where they will land and shut down for one-two hours at various stations while examining the rock outcrops. In addition, certain areas of extremely good exposure will merit "fly camps"; the helicopter will set the team out for 2-3 days at a time and then pick them up. The teams will be collecting some small (up to 6 inches wide) samples representative of certain rock
formations using rock hammers (+/- a chisel). The researchers may also sample larger pieces (up to 12 inches wide) of rock for fossil contents. Teams will also measure thicknesses of rock formations. No heavy equipment, such as drills, will be used for this work.

Fieldwork will be conducted from August 01 to September 15, 2007 on the Peel Plateau and Plain region. The following are the specific locations of data collection in the NWT:
(a) East of Snake River 65°29’45.5”N, 133°00’17.6”W (Yukon)
(b) East of Cranswick River 65°24.06’N, 131°49.035’W (ca. 230km west of Norman Wells)
(c) Orthogonal River 65°07.5’N, 131°30’W (ca. 230km west of Norman Wells)
(d) Imperial Canyon and River 65°06’N, 128°04’W (ca. 60km west of Norman Wells)