Status of Strategic Petroleum Reserve Activities as of March 31, 1985

RCED-85-111: Published: Apr 15, 1985. Publicly Released: Apr 15, 1985.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO presented its quarterly report on the Department of Energy's (DOE) progress in filling the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) and complying with the requirements of applicable law during the second quarter of fiscal year 1985.

GAO found that: (1) the administration released its fiscal year 1986 budget which proposed an indefinite moratorium on developing and filling the SPR and would stop oil fill at 489 million barrels; (2) DOE added 11.1 million barrels of oil during the quarter; (3) DOE paid $498 million for oil acquisition and transportation, had unpaid obligations of about $802 million, and had about $879 million in unobligated funds available for oil purchases; (4) the storage capacity development program proceeded without any major problems; and (5) DOE replaced its SPR operations and maintenance contractor with a new management, operations, and maintenance contractor. GAO also presented information concerning: (1) a testimony on the estimated costs and benefits of alternative SPR systems ranging in size from 489 million to 750 million barrels; (2) implementation of recommendations made in DOE reports of its baseline assessment of the SPR Project Office and its review of allegations of mismanagement or misconduct within the SPR program; and (3) the Project Office's program to analyze the oil in filled storage caverns.

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