Lecture: The Geology of Yemen: An Overview

Speaker: David M Hall Bath Geological Society and SulGeology Ltd

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Members: Free

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Date and Time

19:00 -


Virtual Talk via Zoom

Lecture Description

The topographic and surface geological maps of Yemen show that it is a country of contrasts. To illustrate this, the mainland area can be subdivided into five main regions: The highland region, the fluvially dissected plateau, the flat coastal Plain of the Red Sea rift basin, the rift margin of the Gulf of Aden and the desert areas including the southern margin of the great Rub’ Al Khali sand sea.

The sub-surface provides even more geological interest as stripping back the sedimentary cover reveals at least three major Mesozoic rift basins two of which are proven hydrocarbon provinces. The complex internal fault geometry of these basins reflects the inheritance of Precambrian (and possibly Palaeozoic) lineaments and results in a mosaic of fault-bounded depocenters that probably also extend beneath the volcanic areas in the west of the country.

This talk will provide an overview of the geological history responsible for these characteristics and will also assess the past and future significance of the country’s hydrocarbon resources. A particular focus will be given to fractured Precambrian basement hydrocarbon play which has been a subject of active involvement for the speaker since 2013. The potential for geothermal resources will also be mentioned.

David M. Hall was the Yemen geoscience and exploration manager for TOTAL from 2013 to his retirement in late 2018. Since then, he has been an independent consultant to the PetroMasilah Exploration and Production Company for their on-going activities in Yemen.