A General Review of O il and Gas Developments in the Province of Quebec
J. B. Maughan Chief Petroleum Engineer, J. C. Sproule and Associotes Ltd., Calgary, Alberta.
Gas and oil seeps have been known in Quebec for more than one hundred years. These occur in three main areas which contain sedimentary rocks with a total thickness estimated to vary from 6,000 to 20 ,000 feet. The strata in these areas are similar in many respects to those in producing areas of southwestern Ontario and the Appalachian basin, and the prospects for finding and developing commercial reserves of oil and gas in Quebec would therefore also appear to be favourable. Little of the exploratory drilling to date has been conducted in a systematic manner, and most of the drilling has utilized improper or inadequate equipment. Many wells have also failed to adequately test and fully evaluate the principal zones of interest. Relatively high drilling costs have hindered systematic exploration; however, with improved portable equipment, it is expected that future wells can be drilled with greater efficiency and at less cost. Most of the mineral rights in Quebec are held by the Provincial Government, and acreage can still be leased in large blocks on favourable terms. One shallow gas field has been developed near Three Rivers and there are encouraging indications of the presence of at least one, and possibly more, deep, high-pressure gas reservoirs south of Three Rivers. There has been no oil discovered in commercial quantities. Quebec presently imports all of its crude oil and natural gas, and, as a result, market outlets for locally produced gas and oil are more readily available here than in much of Canada. The Province of Quebec is the second largest consumer of oil in Canada, and, with its high density of both population and manufacturing industries, also has a large growth potential for future sales of natural gas.
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