Biden Making Another Move to Keep Gas Prices From Skyrocketing

President will announce he's authorizing the release of 15M more barrels, sources say
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 19, 2022 2:30 AM CDT
Biden Tapping Strategic Petroleum Reserve Again
A gasoline price board is displayed at a gas station in San Francisco, Tuesday, July 19, 2022.   (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File)

President Biden is authorizing the release of another 15 million barrels from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve and will announce the move Wednesday, sources say. The release, expected sometime in December, will complete the White House's planned release of 180 million barrels, which was announced earlier this year and is the biggest drawdown of oil in US history. Senior administration officials tell NPR the goal is to contain gas prices, ensuring that regardless of actions taken by Russia and other "big players," fuel prices do not spike. It is also a response to market pressures created by OPEC+'s recent decision to slash oil production, CNN reports.

The announcement comes weeks before the midterm elections, in which inflation—and fuel prices specifically—are the top issues for voters. Though the strategic reserve is at a 40-year low, it still contains about 400 million barrels, and the White House says it will be restocked once oil prices fall from their current level of $82 per barrel to somewhere between $67 and $72 per barrel. The administration's release helped to bring prices down for almost three consecutive months, CNN notes, but Biden said at an event last week that "The price of gas is still too high, and we need to keep working to bring it down." (More gas prices stories.)

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