The Biden administration has taken the lead in releasing 50 million barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to lower gas and oil prices for Americans in a first of its kind move. The move was met with a lot of backlash on social media. The release is coordinated between the US, India, China, Japan, the Republic of Korea, and the United Kingdom.
Out of the 50 million barrels, 32 million barrels will be exchanged over the next several months, and the remaining 18 million barrels will be an acceleration of a previously authorized sale spanned across several months.
President Biden hoped to bring down soaring prices of crude oil with his move. The move comes after the West Texas Intermediate Crude Futures were recorded at a seven-year high at above $85 in previous months. According to AAA, the national average for gas was recorded at $3.409 a gallon on Monday, November 22, up from $2.11 last year.
'Dumbest move I've ever heard'
President Biden's announcement of releasing 50 million did not go well with Twitter sleuths as some of them called it the 'dumbest move,' while others dubbed it a political move as a result of his 'low poll numbers.' Some Twitterati also called it means to 'save a freefalling presidential approval rating.'
"Is this to bring price relief or to further increase our dependence on foreign oil to promote his 'green energy'?" one person tweeted.
'President is committed to doing everything in his power to bring the price of oil down for Americans'
A statement by the White House noted that the Americans are affected by elevated gas prices, that's why President Biden is using 'every tool available to lower prices and address the lack of supply'. "Today's announcement reflects the President's commitment to do everything in his power to bring down costs for the American people and continue our strong economic recovery," the statement added.
The announcement comes as crude oil prices soared to their highest level since 2014. Consumer prices in the US rose 6.2% in October. The rise marked their largest 12-month increase since 1990. According to the country's Energy Information Administration data, the US had 606.1 million barrels of oil in its SPR as of November 12, and 433 million barrels in commercial stocks.