Biden Administration To Release 50 Million Barrels From Oil Reserve

In Summary

President Joe Biden dipped into the oil reserve to combat skyrocketing gas prices, but plans to return over half once prices stabilize. 

The Biden administration will release 50 million barrels of oil from the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve. The move by the Department of Energy, which was announced by the White House, is to lower the skyrocketing gas prices around the country. 

However, President Joe Biden doesn’t anticipate using all 50 million barrels. His administration said 32 million barrels will likely be returned strategically over the next few years once gas prices begin to decrease. 

Congress has already authorized the release of 18 million barrels to accelerate the process of an oil sale. 

Earlier in the month, the Labor Department stated consumer prices grew far faster than expected in October, which resulted in inflation rising to a 30-year high. 

Biden previously called on the Federal Trade Commission to explore possible “illegal conduct” due to surging gas prices across the United States. 

RelatedPain at the Pump: Biden Calls for Probe into High Gas Prices 

The probe initiated by Biden ignited the American Petroleum Institute, which placed the blame on Biden, citing bad administration policy decisions.   

“This is a distraction from the fundamental market shift that is taking place and the ill-advised government decisions that are exacerbating this challenging situation,” said senior vice president of policy, economics and regulatory affairs at the American Petroleum Institute, Frank Macchiarola, in a statement. “Demand has returned as the economy comes back and is outpacing supply.” 

The White House said Biden’s goal is to shift away from fossil fuels in the years to come. 

“Today’s announcement reflects the President’s commitment to do everything in his power to bring down costs for the American people and continue our strong economic recovery,” the White House said in a statement. “At the same time, the Administration remains committed to the President’s ambitious clean energy goals, as reflected in the historic Bipartisan Infrastructure Law signed last week and the House-passed Build Back Better Act that together represent the largest investment in combatting climate change in American history and is a critical step towards reaching a net-zero emissions economy by 2050 and reducing our dependence on foreign fossil fuels.” 

Related: Colonial Pipeline Shutdown Fuels Panic Buying, Empty Gas Stations   

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