Skip Links

USGS - science for a changing world

Bulletin 2201-F

Petroleum Geology and Resources of the Baykit High Province, East Siberia, Russia

By Gregory F. Ulmishek

thumbnail of figure 1 and link to B 2201-F PDF (5.3 MB)
Image of Figure 1
Link to Report PDF (5.3 MB)
Right-Click to Download or Save As

The Baykit High province consists of two principal structural units—the Baykit regional high in the west, which occupies most of the province, and the Katanga structural saddle in the east. The province is on the western margin of the Siberian craton east of theYenisey Ridge foldbelt. The province is an exploration frontier and only a few prospects have been drilled. The oldest sedimentary rocks of the province, Riphean carbonate and clastic strata of Late Proterozoic age (1,650–650 million years old) that were deposited on the passive margin, cover the Archean–Lower Proterozoic basement. Basal Vendian (uppermost Proterozoic, 650–570 million years old) clastic rocks unconformably overlie various units of the Riphean and locally lie directly on the basement. Younger Vendian and lowermost Cambrian rocks are primarily dolomites. The Vendian/Cambrian boundary is con-formable, and its exact stratigraphic position has not been identified with certainty. The Lower Cambrian section is thick, and it consists of alternating beds of dolomite and evaporites (mostly salt). Middle and Upper Cambrian strata are composed of shale and dolomite. Ordovician-Silurian and upper Paleozoic rocks are thin, and they are present only in the northern areas of the province. Structural pattern of Riphean rocks differs substantially from that of Vendian-Cambrian rocks.

A single total petroleum system (TPS) was identified in the Baykit High province. Discovered oil of the system is chiefly concentrated in Riphean carbonate reservoirs of the Yurubchen-Tokhom zone that is currently being explored and that has the potential to become a giant field (or group of fields). The TPS also contains about 5 trillion cubic feet of discovered recover-able gas in clastic reservoir rocks at the base of the Vendian section. Petroleum source rocks are absent in the stratigraphic succession over most of the TPS area. Riphean organic-rich shales and carbonates that crop out in the Yenisey Ridge foldbelt west of the Baykit high are probable source rocks. Their areal distribution extends from the foldbelt into the foredeep along the province’s western margin. Potential source rocks also are present in platform depressions in eastern areas of the province. Hydrocarbon generation and migration west of the province started as early as Riphean time, before the beginning of the deformation in the Yenisey Ridge foldbelt that occurred about 820–850 million years ago. However, the presently known oil and gas accumulations were formed after deposition of the Lower Cambrian salt seal.

Cambrian salt seal. Available data allow identification of only one assessment unit, and it covers the entire TPS area. Undiscovered oil and gas resources are moderate, primarily due to the poor quality of reservoir rocks. However, the reserve growth in the Yurubchen-Tokhom zone may be large and may exceed the volume of undiscovered resources in the rest of the province. Most oil and gas resourcesareexpectedtobeinstructuralandstratigraphictrapsin Riphean carbonate reservoirs. Vendian clastic reservoirs are probably gas-prone.

Version 1.0

Posted 2001

Available Chapters for B 2201
  • A — ...Middle Caspian Basin, Former Soviet Union
  • B — ...North Caspian Basin, Kazakhstan and Russia
  • C — ...Southeastern Siberian Craton, Russia
  • D — ...North Ustyurt Basin, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan
  • E — ...Dnieper-Donets Basin, Ukraine and Russia
  • F — ...Baykit High Province, East Siberia, Russia
  • G — ...West Siberian Basin, Russia
  • H — ...Amu-Darya Basin, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, and Iran
  • I — Oligocene–Miocene Maykop/Diatom Total Petroleum System of the South Caspian Basin Province, Azerbaijan, Iran, and Turkmenistan

Part or all of this report is presented in Portable Document Format (PDF); the latest version of Adobe Acrobat Reader or similar software is required to view it. Download the latest version of Acrobat Reader, free of charge or go to for free tools that allow visually impaired users to read PDF files.
[an error occurred while processing this directive]