By David Simpson
Belfast geologist Susan Morrice has looked for oil and gass around the world – but her latest project is very close to home.
She has been appointed consultant geologist to the exploration company aiming to extract oil and gas from the Fermanagh, Cavan and Leitrim areas.
Ms. Morrice, who is 31, heads her own geology consultancy firm, based in Denver, Colorado.
The search for oil and gas-bearing rock formations is an international occupation and Ms. Morrice’s work has taken her to the Far East, Alaska and North Africa, as well as America.
She went to Ashleigh House School and it was while studying for her geology degree at Trinity College, Dublin, that she first came across the North West Carboniferous Basis, as the cross-border potential oil field is known.
Eight years ago, she carried out field work in the Crawfordsburn area – but the geological structure under examination was part of the same fault system found in the Fermanagh cross border region.
“I never thought then I would be back in Northern Ireland looking for oil and gas,” said Ms. Morrice, who is presently visiting her family home at Adelaide Park, Belfast.
After graduating from Trinity, she worked as a geologist for a couple of American companies before finally setting up her own firm, S. M. Morrice and Associate, two years ago.
“We know there is gas and oil in the North West basin. It is a question of whether we can find it in commercial quantities,” she said.