This article was published by Voice Of America News on March 31, 2022.
United States President Joe Biden says he will order the release of 1 million barrels of oil a day for six months from the country’s strategic petroleum supply to lower energy prices.
An official announcement of the policy was expected later Thursday.
Energy prices have been rising for the past year and spiked after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
The release will be the largest in the near 50-year history of the strategic petroleum supply.
Biden has already made two releases of millions of barrels, but the moves did not have much impact on the price of gas.
Oil prices dropped 3 per cent on the news to about $104 a barrel. One year ago, the price of a barrel was $60.
The strategic petroleum reserve was created following the 1973 oil crisis to ensure oil availability in the case of a natural disaster or national security issue.
The reserves of about 600 million barrels are stored in salt domes along the Texas and Louisiana coasts.
Biden was also expected to call on Congress to penalize oil companies that are leasing public lands but not producing energy.
Some information in this report comes from The Associated Press.
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