Trump budget wants to halve oil stockpile, open Arctic refuge to drilling

U.S. President Donald Trump’s White House wants to sell half of the nation’s emergency oil stockpile and open the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge to drilling as part of plans to balance the budget over the next 10 years, documents by the administration showed.

The White House budget, which will be delivered to Congress on Tuesday, is meant as a proposal and may not take effect in its current form. But it reveals the administration’s policy hopes, which include ramping up American energy output.

The U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve, the world’s largest, holds about 688 million barrels of crude oil in heavily guarded underground caverns in Louisiana and Texas. Congress created it in 1975 after the Arab oil embargo caused fears of long-term motor fuel price spikes that would harm the U.S. economy.

The Trump budget proposes to start selling SPR oil in fiscal year 2018, which begins on Oct. 1, with sales that would generate $500 million, according to the documents. The sales from the reserve would gradually rise over the following years, peaking at nearly $3.9 billion in 2027, and totaling nearly $16.6 billion from 2018 to 2027.

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