Oil & Gas Resources
Wyoming’s geologic past included a fortuitous overlap of biology, geology, and geography that resulted in large hydrocarbon resources. Wyoming was repeatedly covered in shallow seaways, especially during the Permian Period (~278–253 million years ago) and later during the Cretaceous Period (~124–65 million years ago). Large amounts of biological material (microscopic plants and animals) accumulated in these seaways, and subsequent burial and increased pressures and temperatures allowed the organic material to mature into hydrocarbons. The hydrocarbons migrated in the subsurface through fractures and porous sandstones, and were ultimately trapped underground throughout Wyoming’s basins. These traps are currently Wyoming’s oil and gas fields.
(click here to learn more about Wyoming basins).