Oil and Natural Gas

An initial undertaking by scientists with the USGS Oil and Natural Gas Project in Afghanistan was to obtain and review all available geochemical, geologic, seismic, tectonic, and petroleum exploration and production data in order to accurately characterize the country’s petroleum geology.

Then, in cooperation with the Afghanistan Ministry of Mines and Industry (AMMI), project scientists undertook a comprehensive assessment of potential, yet-undiscovered oil and gas resources (including crude oil, natural gas, and natural gas liquids/condensates), primarily in the northern part of the country. The purpose of this assessment was to provide data necessary to implement rebuilding and development of Afghanistan’s energy infrastructure.

The assessment is based on the geologic elements of total petroleum systems defined in the geologic province, including (1) source rock presence, maturation, petroleum generation, and migration, (2) location and quality of reservoir rocks, and (3) character of traps and time of formation with respect to petroleum migration. Detailed studies of geochemistry, petroleum geology, geophysics, and tectonics combined with an analysis of previous exploration efforts were used to estimate the number and size of undiscovered petroleum accumulations.


A list of all USGS Oil and Gas Project publications is available here.