Biden Refuses To Replenish U.S. Oil Stockpile

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( – The administration of President Biden has recently halted two proposed oil acquisitions intended for restocking the United States’ Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR), as confirmed by the Department of Energy on Wednesday.

These acquisitions would have added 3 million barrels to the reserve later in the year, aiming to completely refill the SPR by the end of the year. Initially, these purchases, destined for a facility in Louisiana, were announced in March.

An Energy Department representative conveyed to The Hill, “With the taxpayers’ interests as a priority, we will not proceed with the awards for the Bayou Choctaw SPR site in August and September. We will keep seeking opportunities to increase capacity as the market allows. Our approach is to continuously assess market conditions, allowing us to adapt and innovate in our efforts to effectively replenish this vital national security resource.”

In November 2021, the Biden administration extracted approximately 50 million barrels from the SPR, aiming to stabilize gasoline prices. In the subsequent spring, due to the energy disruptions caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the administration executed the largest-ever withdrawal from the SPR, which included releasing 1 million barrels per day for a period of 180 days.

At that time, the administration committed to refilling the SPR, depending on market conditions, with an objective to repurchase oil when prices were at or below $79 per barrel.

Nevertheless, the price of oil was approximately $81 per barrel during the last repurchase in March, when the U.S. reacquired nearly 3 million barrels. The American benchmark for oil, West Texas Intermediate, has recently climbed, exceeding $85 per barrel for the first time in six months earlier this week.

Since last year, the Department of Energy has repurchased around 32.3 million barrels for the SPR. Before the conflict in Ukraine began, the stockpile contained about 600 million barrels, but now it holds slightly more than 363 million barrels, which is just over half its capacity, as of April.

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