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U.S. energy chief says Biden would veto House Republican bill on oil reserve

Commodities Jan 23, 2023 06:51PM ET
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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm hosts a U.S. Department of Energy news conference to announce that scientists at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) have made a breakthrough on fusion energy, the process that powers th
 
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By Steve Holland, Timothy Gardner and Nandita Bose

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -President Joe Biden will veto a bill by U.S. House of Representatives Republicans on the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) if it passes Congress, Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said on Monday.

In a letter last week, Granholm warned Republicans that limiting the Democratic president's authority to tap the nation's oil reserves would undermine national security, cause crude oil shortages, and raise gasoline prices.

"He will not allow the American people to suffer because of the backwards agenda that House Republicans are advancing" Granholm, speaking to reporters at a White House briefing, said of Biden.

The bill, called HR21, would prohibit the energy secretary from tapping the SPR without producing a plan to increase oil and gas leasing on federal lands - unless the release is for a severe oil supply emergency.

The House, which Republicans control by a narrow margin, is expected to vote on the bill as soon as this week. The legislation would face an uphill battle in the Senate, controlled by Democrats.

Republican lawmakers say they are concerned that last year's releases from the SPR, the biggest amount of crude oil from any president, have deteriorated the ability to store, pipe and pump oil at the SPR, which holds crude across series of underground natural caverns on the Texas and Louisiana coasts.

"We would like to curtail use of the SPR for only those situations where there's a severe supply interruption," a Republican aide to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce told reporters.

Biden tapped the SPR repeatedly last year in response to oil prices that jumped due to Russia's invasion of Ukraine and as travel increased while the COVID-19 pandemic eased.

Biden announced last March a record 180 million-barrel sale over six months that drove the reserve's level to its lowest since late 1983.

The Energy Department this month rejected the first batch of bids from oil companies to resupply a small amount of crude to the SPR.

Despite that rejection, Granholm said she is confident the United States will be able to refill the SPR and save taxpayers money by buying oil at a lower price than the government originally purchased the supplies.

“The offers that we received did not meet specification or price,” the secretary said. She said the administration would soon announce how it will buy back some initial replenishment oil for the reserve.

U.S. energy chief says Biden would veto House Republican bill on oil reserve
 

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Comments (13)
ousmane DaBo
ousmane DaBo Jan 23, 2023 8:56PM ET
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salut à vous
Maximus Maximus
Maximus Maximus Jan 23, 2023 7:21PM ET
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sell spr oil at a high price, refill it later at a lower price. makes sense to anyone with a functioning brain.
Joy Hunt
Joy Hunt Jan 23, 2023 7:21PM ET
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Yes, except the price is $10.00 above the price they want to buy it back. So right now the situation is such that Biden needs to release more SPR in order to get the price down to $70.00 so unless he can get approval to release SPR and bring it to historic lows the taxpayers will get screwed when he has to buy back at a higher price using taxpayer monies.
First Last
First Last Jan 23, 2023 7:21PM ET
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Joy Hunt   Biden admin hasn't made any moves to sell more from the SPR, has it?
First Last
First Last Jan 23, 2023 7:21PM ET
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I read somewhere Biden admin sold at average price of $95, which is >15 % above current price.  So even if refill now, still nicely profitable for taxpayers.  I have a functioning brain!  ;-)
Angus Malarkey
Angus Malarkey Jan 23, 2023 6:54PM ET
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The SPR is for emergencies. This Energy Secretary is a parasite that has been feeding at the government trough for too long.
Maximus Maximus
Maximus Maximus Jan 23, 2023 6:54PM ET
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relax. russia is busy elsewhere. neither they nor anyone else will be in a position to invade the US for the next few decades..
Lemon Lime
Lemon Lime Jan 23, 2023 6:54PM ET
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Total right wing BS. Get Out!
Trumpster Rocks
Trumpster Rocks Jan 23, 2023 5:42PM ET
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This Entire Administration is THE SWAMP THAT THE ACTUAL PRESIDENT TRUMP WARNED US ABOUT
Barani Krishnan
Barani Krishnan Jan 23, 2023 5:42PM ET
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Actual president? You mean the one who lost more than two years ago?
John Hill
John Hill Jan 23, 2023 5:42PM ET
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Barani Krishnan only blind people can't see that the election was stolen.
Maximus Maximus
Maximus Maximus Jan 23, 2023 5:42PM ET
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tinfoil hats anyone?
إسحاق يعقوب
إسحاق يعقوب Jan 23, 2023 5:19PM ET
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yez more misinformation everyday
Michael Mcdonough
Michael Mcdonough Jan 23, 2023 4:38PM ET
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Yes more misinformation everyday from the comedy team..
SB Gohner
No3putts Jan 23, 2023 4:26PM ET
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The bill had to do with banning the sale of SPR oil to China.
Rezo Loution
Rezo Loution Jan 23, 2023 4:26PM ET
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you'd have to find companies that would enforce the ban because distribution is in their hands not the government. oil companies do what they do. Capitalism for profit. pretty basic
Connecticut Yankee
A_Jaundiced_Eye Jan 23, 2023 3:36PM ET
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The caption for the photo doesn't include her quote: "And if anyone complains, I'll wrap these around their short ones!"
First Last
First Last Jan 23, 2023 3:31PM ET
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Tapping the SPR is about selling, NOT spending.  The gov't will have to spend $ to refill the SPR.
Connecticut Yankee
A_Jaundiced_Eye Jan 23, 2023 3:25PM ET
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Just close your eyes and keep humming the mantra: "Discipline - BAD. Spending - GOOD." Like Dr. Goebbels said, continue repeating it and eventually enough people will accept it as true.
 
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