LOWER PALEOZOIC POSSIBILITIES LIKELY ALONG EUROPE'S VARISCAN FOLD BELT

N.J.P. Smith British Geological Survey Keyworth, U.K. The hydrocarbon prospectivity of Paleozoic rocks in the northern Variscide chain and its foreland has been examined. A model of the Variscides (Fig. 1) involving an opening and closing Rheic Ocean is preferred to existing models. Seismic reflection profiles (on which Fig. 2 is based) are interpreted as evidence for the extension that occurred, leading to formation of the ocean. In addition to prospects in late Paleozoic rocks, the early

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