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Taranaki Basin



  • The Taranaki Basin contains one Offshore Release Area (13TAR-R1) and three Onshore Blocks (13TAR1, 13TAR4, and 13TAR5) on offer in Block Offer 2013.
  • Commercial scale petroleum at every stratigraphic level from Pliocene to Paleocene
  • Proven plays in thrust features, inversion structures and extensional structures
  • Access to existing production infrastructure
  • Under-explored compared to comparable rift complex basins – considerable potential
  • Order the 2013 Petroleum Exploration Data Pack
Taranaki sediment thickness



Offshore Release Area 13TAR-R1 covers a large portion of the currently producing Taranaki Basin (24,224.2 km2). Little exploration has been carried out beyond the shelf edge, offering opportunities to test existing and new play concepts.

The three Onshore Blocks total 242.1 km2 and are all adjacent to existing discoveries or producing fields.

Modelling of source rocks in the shelf and onshore parts of the basin suggests that about 1,600 billion bbl of oil and 2,400 tcf of gas have been expelled by Cretaceous to Eocene source rocks. The majority of Taranaki oil, primarily waxy crude of about 45° API, has been geochemically typed to Late Cretaceous to Paleogene coaly source rocks.

Paralic facies accumulated on a broad, landward-migrating shelf and coastal plain, where extensive coal swamps developed. Rapid Neogene burial has brought these rocks to depths where they are mature and expelling both oil and gas today. In the deep water province, much of the Rakopi Formation remains at, or just above, the present oil expulsion window.

The Taranaki Basin has producing reservoirs of Paleocene to Pliocene ages. Although there are no producing reservoirs of Cretaceous age, they remain prospective in parts of the basin. Gas-condensate and oil are found in Paleogene reservoirs, whereas Neogene reservoirs mainly trap oil. Stacked reservoirs are common in the Maui, Kapuni and Rimu/Kauri fields.

Last updated 14 April 2014

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