The U.S. Department of Energy will take 28 million bbl of federal royalty oil from the central Gulf of Mexico and store it in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve.
Energy Sec. Bill Richardson said the SPR replenishment, which will begin about Apr. 10, was neither intended nor expected to raise the price of oil in the U.S.
But Gil Thurm, Independent Petroleum Association of America president, said, "We hope the market will recognize the fact that there will be more oil off the market."
Richardson announced other initiatives to help small oil producers hurt by low crude prices (see related story, this page).
The 28 million bbl equals what the government sold to he...