Petroleum systems of Alpine-Mediterranean foldbelts and basins


Abstract " The Alpine-Mediterranean area hosts a number of large and smaller hydro-carbon provinces in platforms, rifts, foreland basins and the frontal parts of thrust belts. These hydrocarbon provinces are related to a wide range of source rocks occurring in Palaeozoic, Mesozoic and Cenozoic series. Source rocks are alternatively localized in pre-rift, syn-rift or passive-margin sequences, the age of which is highly variable. Moreover, syn-orogenic foreland basin sequences can contain important source-rocks and are fre-quently the locus of biogenic gas generation. Most Mesozoic passive margins of the Western Tethys were destroyed during the Alpine orogenic cycle and were overthrusted by or incorporated into orogenic wedges, the external parts of which host a number of highly diversified petroleum systems. Late Variscan and Alpine compressional intraplate deformation had severe repercussions onthe hydrocarbon habitat of some of the Peri-Tethyan platforms. Late Cretaceous and Palaeogene intracra-tonic and back-arc rifts host some important petroleum provinces; the Euphrates, Abu Gharadig and Sirte basins rely for hydrocarbon charge on syn-rift source rocks whereas post-rift series contain the source rocks of the Black Sea back-arc basin. Oligocene an

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