Is SPR worth the money?

Does the US need the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR)? An analysis by the Cato Institute concludes that it does not.With a capacity of 727 million bbl, expected to be full in a few months, the SPR is the largest government-owned stockpile of petroleum in the world. Established 30 years ago in response to the Arab oil embargo, the goal of the SPR is to store oil for use in a “severe energy supply disruption” at the US president’s discretion.The SPR has been tapped only three times. In each instance, the release was too small and too late to produce significant benefits, Cato says, with the exception of this year’s release related to Hurricane Katrina.Politics, insu...

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