Geologists say there could be reserves of oil and gas in areas around Scotland’s coast, which have previously been dismissed.
A team from the University of Aberdeen has been studying rock formations around a small outcrop 300 miles off the Western Isles.
Earlier attempts to find oil in the area have been largely unsuccessful so very little exploration has taken place in the area. However after studying new seismic data, geologists say past drilling may have been concentrated in the wrong areas.
Geologists Dr Nick Schofield said: “The Rockall Basin is one of the most challenging environments on earth when it comes to hydrocarbon explorations, but our analysis has revealed that one of the barriers to success may have been a misunderstanding of the subsurface geology.
By analyzing seismic data and using what we have learned through our work in the Faroe-Shetland Basin, we found that the character of areas where operators hoped to find oil may have been misleading.”
This discovery does not guarantee that large reserves of oil will be found in the area by suggests it is worth further exploration. However, with the oil price still below $60 a barrel, and with the hostile nature of that part of the Atlantic, geologists think it is unlikely there will be an immediate rush to drill more wells.
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