Murkowski: Opening Strategic Petroleum Reserve to Storage Is A Good Step

April 3, 2020

U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, today issued the following statement in support of the U.S. Department of Energy’s request for proposals to allow American companies to temporarily store up to 30 million barrels of oil in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR). 

“While I believe the Strategic Petroleum Reserve should be refilled to its maximum capacity as soon as possible, I support this creative initiative by the Department of Energy to use its existing statutory authorities to provide temporary storage for American producers,” Murkowski said. “America’s energy dominance is under threat—both by reduced global demand wrought by the coronavirus pandemic and the Saudi-Russian price war. It is important that we explore all lawful means of protecting our nation’s vital industries.”

Earlier this week, Murkowski sent a letter urging the Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration to publish timely data on oil storage capacity in the United States as an indicator of potential shut-in oil production. 

Murkowski also supports congressional appropriations to refill the SPR, including the $3 billion included in the Senate version of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act. That provision was ultimately excluded from the final bill. 

Murkowski is Chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.