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2.1 Million Barrels Delayed Until Spring 2009

WASHINGTON, DC - The U. S. Department of Energy today announced it will defer approximately 2.1 million barrels of royalty-in-kind (RIK) exchange crude oil that had been scheduled for delivery to the nation's Strategic Petroleum Reserve sites (SPR) this summer.

The deferred deliveries are part of a royalty-in-kind crude oil exchange that began in January 2008 and were to total approximately 11 million barrels delivered to the SPR through July 2008.  The approximately 2.1 million barrels will be deferred for delivery until March-May 2009, after the winter heating season.  Deliveries of approximately 2.8 million barrels were not deferred and will continue through July 2008.  Shipment of these barrels was already underway and could not be practicably deferred.

The deferral action is consistent with recently enacted legislation, the "Strategic Petroleum Reserve Fill Suspension and Consumer Protection Act of 2008," to negotiate deferral of deliveries to the maximum extent practicable, and with the Department of Energy's Procedures for the Acquisition of Petroleum for the Strategic Petroleum Reserve.

The Royalty-in-Kind (RIK) program began in 1999 and continues in accordance with the Energy Policy Act of 2005 which directs the SPR to fill to the capacity of 1 billion barrels.  The RIK program has been jointly administered by DOE and the Department of Interior's (DOI) Mineral Management Service to transfer the government's share of petroleum production from federal offshore leases to be exchanged at the market center for crude oil that meets the SPR's quality specifications. The exchange/crude oil is then transferred to the four SPR sites located on the Gulf Coast of Louisiana and Texas.  The Strategic Petroleum Reserve currently holds 704 million barrels.

For more information on the Strategic Petroleum Reserve visit the Office of Fossil Energy.

Media contact(s):

Angela Hill, (202) 586-4940