Upper Paleozoic to lowest Triassic Succession -- Sukunka -- Kakwa area, BC (NTS 93I, 93O, 93P)
- Charles Henderson, University of Calgary

Sukunka - Kakwa area The British Columbia portion of the Western Canada Sedimentary Basin (WCSB) is far less developed than the Alberta portion. In the past decade this area has experienced tremendous growth, particularly in natural-gas exploration. Despite this fact many parts of northeastern British Columbia remain significantly under explored due to difficulties in accessibility and a lack of available infrastructure. Upper Paleozoic (Pennsylvanian and Permian) strata are among British Columbia's most important reservoir intervals (Bird et al., 1994), as they are very much under explored and have considerable potential to yield a major supply of natural gas.

One area that has been identified as having particularly high potential for undiscovered conventional natural gas resources is the southern Foothills belt and adjacent Deep Basin in the Sukunka-Kakwa area (Fig. 1; National Energy Board, 2006). Upper Paleozoic (Pennsylvanian and Permian) strata host some of this region's largest producing fields, however their potential for undiscovered marketable hydrocarbons remains particularly high (National Energy Board 1999; 2006).

Despite strong industry interest in Permo- Pennsylvanian (Ksituan and Belloy formations) strata no detailed stratigraphic and sedimentologic studies of Upper Paleozoic strata have been conducted in the Sukunka-Kakwa area. This proposal seeks to fill this knowledge gap through a multidisciplinary study conducted by researchers at the University of Calgary and the Geological Survey of Canada (Calgary office). This project will develop detailed predictive sedimentary facies and diagenetic models within an integrated sequence biostratigraphic framework for known and potential reservoir intervals in Upper Paleozoic strata within the Kakwa - Sukunka region of northeastern British Columbia (NTS 1:250,000 map sheets 93-I and 93-O and 93-P; 54-55.75N; 120-122 W). Data gleaned from outcrop sections will be synthesized with all available subsurface data (primarily core and wireline logs but also seismic data where available from our industry sponsor, Talisman). The lowest parts of the Triassic succession will also be investigated to help understand the tectonic controls on deposition and preservation of this succession.

Posters and Presentations
2012: Chronostratigraphy and Tectonostratigraphy of the Late Paleozoic Cratonic Succession in East-Central British Columbia and Implications for Pericratonic Terrane Geology
- Mineral Exploration Roundup Poster (pdf, 9.8 MB)

2010: The Biostratigraphy and Evolution of a Pennsylvanian-Permian Carbonate Ramp, East-Central British Columbia
- GeoCanada 2010 Poster, K. Zubin-Stathopoulus, University of Calgary (pdf, 42MB)

2010: The Lower Triassic Sulphur Mountain (Montney) Formation, Mount Crum Section, East-Central British Columbia: Age of Turbidites, Tectonic Implication and Montney Lithofacies Interpretation
- GeoCanada 2010 Poster, Y.P. Chau, University of Calgary (pdf, 5.5MB)

2010: Fracture Analysis of Upper Paleozoic Carbonates: East-Central British Columbia
- GeoCanada 2010 Poster, G.J. Dean, University of Calgary (zip, 2.4MB)
Technical Articles
2012: "Chronostratigraphic and tectonostratigraphic summary of the Late Paleozoic and Early Triassic succession in east-central British Columbia"
- Summary of Activities 2011, Report 2012-1 p. 115-224 (pdf, 1.6 MB)

2011: "Tectonic evolution and paleogeography of Pennsylvanian–Permian strata in east-central British Columbia: implications from stratigraphy, fracture analysis and sedimentology"
- Summary of Activities 2010, Report 2011-1 p. 209-222 (pdf, 14.3 MB)

2011: "Biostratigraphic correlation and shale fabric of Lower Triassic strata, east-central British Columbia"
- Summary of Activities 2010, Report 2011-1 p. 223-228 (pdf, 3.2 MB)

2010: "Tectonic history, biostratigraphy and fracture analysis of upper Paleozoic and lowest Triassic strata of east-central British Columbia (NTS 093I, O, P): preliminary report"
- Summary of Activities 2009, Report 2010-1 p.259-270 (pdf, 10.4 MB)

Final Deliverables
M.Sc. Thesis - K. Zubin-Stathopoulus
Tectonic Evolution, Paleogeography and Paleoclimate of Pennsylvanian--Permian Strata in East-Central British Columbia: Implications from Conodont Biostratigraphy and Carbonate Sedimentology - University of Calgary, 2011 - Available digitally through the University of Calgary (pdf, 47 MB)

Abstract: A tectonically dynamic margin existed along northwestern Pangea during the Pennsylvanian-Permian where block faults influenced paleogeographic features. The distribution of temperature dependent carbonate secreting organisms and other constituents was in part controlled by the development of fault bounded sub-basins. The Pennsylvanian-Permian strata in east central British Columbia are punctuated by significant unconformities that were primarily the result of tectonic influences. The sequences between these unconformities are correlated using high-resolution conodont biostratigraphy. The two main tectonic events recognized are the C6 (Kasimovian), and the P4 (Kungurian). These events can be correlated to those already well described in the Canadian Arctic and Nevada. The C6 event initiated the uplift of a structure that was prevalent during the Early Permian. The distribution of types of sediment with respect to this paleogeographic high reflected a warm water sea inboard of the high, and cool water west of this high due to the influence of upwelling water at this paleolatitude (15-20 N).


Show printable version of '2007-012 - Upper Paleozoic to lowest Triassic Succ...' in a New Window