Jason Bordoff, Founding Director of the Center on Global Energy Policy, testified before the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources at a hearing to examine the potential modernization of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) and related energy security issues. In his testimony, he made three main points:
- First, the SPR, created in the wake of the 1970s oil crisis, remains an important national security asset, notwithstanding the sharp rise in U.S. oil production and steep drop in U.S. oil imports.
- Second, it is prudent to study whether the size, composition, location, or use of the SPR should be modified to reflect changes in the global oil market over the past four decades, but the results of that analysis, not current budget needs, should dictate whether to sell a large volume of SPR crude oil.
- Third, there is an urgent need to modernize the SPR’s existing infrastructure to ensure that it can remain effective in the event of an emergency by delivering additional and incremental barrels to the market, and revenue from the SPR should be directed toward this imperative before any other.