Sciences in Cold and Arid Regions 2013/5:6 PP.691-697
At present, gas hydrates are known to occur in continental high latitude permafrost regions and deep sea sediments. Formiddle latitude permafrost regions of the Tibetan Plateau, further research is required to ascertain its potential developmentof gas hydrates. This paper reviewed pertinent literature on gas hydrates in the Tibetan Plateau. Both geological and ge-ographical data are synthesized to reveal the relationship between gas hydrate formation and petroleum geological evo-lution, Plateau uplift, formation of permafrost, and glacial processes. Previous studies indicate that numerous residualbasins in the Plateau have been formed by original sedimentary basins accompanied by rapid uplift of the Plateau. Ex-tensive marine Mesozoic hydrocarbon source rocks in these basins could provide rich sources of materials forming gashydrates in permafrost. Primary hydrocarbon-generating period in the Plateau is from late Jurassic to early Cretaceous,while secondary hydrocarbon generation, regionally or locally, occurs mainly in the Paleogene. Before rapid uplift of thePlateau, oil-gas reservoirs were continuously destroyed and assembled to form new reservoirs due to structural and thermaldynamics, forcing hydrocarbon migration. Since 3.4 Ma B.P., the Plateau has undergone strong uplift and extensive gla-ciation, periglacier processes prevailed, hydrocarbon gas again migrated, and free gas beneath ice sheets within sedi-mentary materials interacted with water, generating gas hydrates which were finally preserved under a cap formed byfrozen layers through rapid cooling in the Plateau. Taken as a whole, it can be safely concluded that there is great temporaland spatial coupling relationships between evolution of the Tibetan Plateau and generation of gas hydrates.
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