Analysis of the Comprehensive Energy Emergency Response Procedures Report

RCED-83-106: Published: Feb 17, 1983. Publicly Released: Feb 17, 1983.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO analyzed the comprehensive energy emergency response procedures report submitted by the President to Congress on December 31, 1982.

GAO found that the procedures report does not adequately detail the options available to the President. Key programs, notably the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR), emergency executive manpower reserves, and some International Energy Agency programs face major implementation problems. In addition, the administration has not adequately planned for SPR use. Legal restraints preclude the effective use of emergency executive manpower reserves at the present time: the reserves could only be activated in a national defense related energy emergency; reservists who advise during an emergency are subject to conflict-of-interest laws; and their participation in the program could expose their companies to antitrust risks. Little detail is given on the content or status of international energy programs. Key policy issues in some program areas, such as coordination of Federal and State policies and programs, are not adequately resolved. Some key issues, such as the role of private stocks, are barely discussed or are omitted altogether. In addition, the procedures report does not demonstrate that reliable emergency response procedures are available to implement the above options. GAO also found that many of the procedures have not been fully developed.

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