Finding Oil and Natural Gas in Québec
Sedimentary basins favourable to hydrocarbon accumulation cover approximately 12% of Québec’s vast territory, near 200 000 km2. About half of this territory is located on land surface accessible for exploration. The study of several seismic surveys and the data of nearly 400 significant wells drilled in Québec provide pertinent information on geological zones and the presence of hydrocarbons was demonstrated in 6 different sedimentary basins: St. Lawrence Lowlands, Lower St. Lawrence, Gaspésie, St. Lawrence estuary, St. Lawrence Gulf and Northern Québec. Junex is active in three of these sedimentary basins: St. Lawrence Lowlands, Gaspésie and Anticosti.
With more than 3 million net acres under exploration licence and an additional 1.6 million acres with minority participations, Junex is by far the most important licence holder in Québec.
When Junex was created in 1999, few people believed in the real potential of Québec’s sedimentary basins. Even if the discovery of natural gas in the Utica Shales in 2008 leaves no one in doubt about the St. Lawrence Lowlands’ potential today, Québec’s geology offers several other targets favourable to oil and gas discoveries.
The level of exploration for hydrocarbon resources in Québec is one of the lowest in the world. When taking into account that the first exploration well was drilled in Gaspésie in 1860, the annual average of drillings is less than 3 wells per year. On land surface, drilling density is of one well per 250 km2. In light of such a situation, it has always been obvious for Junex that additional work would enable the discovery of much sought after oil and gas accumulation.
The rocky formations of Québec’s basins are contemporary of those of important oil basins in Western Canada and Appalachian (Pennsylvania, Michigan, New York or Ontario) and certain sedimentary areas have stunning similarities with prolific basins of the United-States. North-Eastern sedimentary basins have known an important revival from the oil industry in the last decade.
- Development of oil and gas deposits in Trenton/Black River in Ontario and in the state of New York by Talisman Energy;
- Discovery and production of the McCully gas deposit in New Brunswick’s Devonian sandstone by Corridor Resources;
- Development of the Marcellus Shale gas deposit in Pennsylvania and Western Virginia by Range Resources.
The companies Encana and Range Resources are presently developing the Utica Shales gas potential in Michigan, Pennsylvania and Ohio. Because geology knows no border, Junex’s exploration efforts pay off:
- Discovery of the important Utica Shale deposit in Southern Québec;
- Discovery of important oil resources in the Devonian limestone of Gaspésie;
- Discovery of dolomite areas in the carbonates of the Chazy Group;
- Participation in the development of oil resources in the Devonian sandstone of Gaspésie.
Junex continues to explore many other prospects in the dolomites of the Beekmantown Group and in the Cambro-Ordovician sandstone of the St. Lawrence Lowlands.