The Biden administration will release 50 million barrels of oil from the nation’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve in a bid to control rising costs at the pump, the White House announced Tuesday.
Tuesday’s announcement came as China, India, Japan, South Korea and the United Kingdom also announced they will tap into their own strategic reserves. The release is aimed at addressing the lack of oil supply around the world due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
U.S. officials said that of the 50 million barrels, 32 million will eventually be returned to the strategic reserve over the years ahead once fuel prices come down in a bid to ensure the reserve remains stocked, according to CNN. Another 18 million barrels will be released as an acceleration of an oil sale Congress had already authorized.
The Biden administration had reportedly discussed the strategic reserve option in recent weeks to increase supply as consumers faced higher gas prices amid broader concerns about inflation as the economy rebounds from the coronavirus pandemic, which contributed to sinking poll numbers.