Dems cut back on Trump’s efforts to rebuild the SPR, as oil was cheap oil

In the final months of President Donald Trump’s presidency, the strategic oil reserve was in the spotlight as he sought to rebuild it after years of neglect and at a time when oil was cheap.

But Democrats cut it out of a bill it was included in, claiming it was a hit on Big Oil.

World Oil reported in March 2020:

In recent years, Congress has used the stockpile as a piggy bank for government programs, and Trump had previously agreed to reduce it by half, something critics opposed, even though the slate revolution allowed the United States to reduce its dependence on imports.

If the government filled the reserve for capacity at today’s prices, the purchase would cost about $ 2.6 billion and could generate about 430,000 barrels a day in demand over about six months.

“We’re going to fill it all the way to the top – and save the US taxpayers billions and billions of dollars and help our oil industry,” Trump said at the time.

Roll Call reported on Democrats’ efforts to halt Trump’s plan in March 2020 and take credit for a strike on Big Oil:

The Trump administration’s plan to top the strategic oil reserve ran into a blockade on Wednesday after lawmakers excluded $ 3 billion in funding for oil purchases from the massive stimulus package before Congress. Senate Democrats took the credit for removing that money from the Senate bill unveiled Wednesday, calling it a “rescue package” for the oil industry.

The Ministry of Energy solicited offers from small and medium-sized producers to fill the reserve and mitigate the fallout from low oil prices after the global market collapsed this month, following decisions by Russia and Saudi Arabia to continue production. But the DOE would need money from Congress to make purchases for the SPR. The fund has about $ 10 million in its SPR fund. The department also announced on March 10 that it would postpone a planned sale of oil from the reserve, citing low prices.

Congress has at least four times since 2015 utilized the reserve to pay for the legislation, including the 21st Century Cures Act, the 2017 tax review, the 2015 bipartisan budget agreement and the 2015 freeway infrastructure bill.

Now Biden and the Democrats are trying to use the SPR to reduce oil prices and thus lower gasoline prices.

However, according to the Federal Energy Information Administration, the move would be far from solving the problem, “By 2020, the United States consumed an average of about 18.19 million barrels of oil per day, or a total of about 6.66 billion barrels of petroleum. This was the lowest level annually. consumption since 1995. The decline in consumption in 2020 from 2019 was the largest recorded annual decline in U.S. oil demand. The decline was mainly the result of the global response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. “

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