Resinite-rich coals of northeast Greenland - a hitherto unrecognized, highly oil-prone Jurassic source rock

Jørgen A. Bojesen-Koefoed, Flemming G. Christiansen, Henrik I. Petersen, Stefan Piasecki, Lars Stemmerik, Hans P. Nytoft

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


Resinite-rich, high sulphur coals present at Hochstetter Forland and in other areas of northeast Greenland constitute excellent petroleum source rocks. Rock-Eval Hydrogen Indices may exceed 700, and the total generation potential is estimated at 27 million bbl/km2. The coals are of low rank, and have not realized their generation potential to any significant degree. They are entirely dominated by liptinite-group macerals, with resinite being the most abundant constituent, accounting for up to 70 per cent of the coal. Biomarker distributions in saturated extract fractions display a number of characteristic features, including high abundance of sesqui- and diterpenoids, high pristane to phytane ratios, low CPI, prominence of alkyl- and methyl-alkylcyclohexanes, low abundance of tricyclic triterpanes and extended hopanes, and a marked predominance of C29 over C27 steranes. Peat deposition took place in quiescent nearshore environments, characterized by low clastic input and occasional inundation by the sea. The parent vegetation was dominated by unknown gymnosperms. The existence of Lower and Middle Jurassic deposits of related type in a number of areas onshore and offshore west Norway may hint at a more widespread presence of such coals in the Jurassic North Atlantic area. If deposits similar to the northeast Greenland coals exist in offshore areas, they may make significant local contributions to the overall petroleum potential of the North Atlantic region.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)458-473
Number of pages16
JournalBulletin of Canadian Petroleum Geology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sept 1996

Programme Area

  • Programme Area 3: Energy Resources


Dive into the research topics of 'Resinite-rich coals of northeast Greenland - a hitherto unrecognized, highly oil-prone Jurassic source rock'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this