The American Trucking Associations (ATA) has issued a letter to the Dept. of Energy (DOE) and the Council of Economic Advisors in response to rising diesel prices. The letter advises DOE to reduce the fill rate of the national Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR).
“When the government becomes a major purchaser of oil, it only bids up the price exactly when (the trucking industry) needs relief,” said Bill Graves, ATA president, in the letter.
The letter cites Goldman Sachs in estimating that the reserve program adds $4.25 to each barrel of crude oil. This assessment is contrary to DOE estimates that the program has a negligible impact on the price of crude oil.
Tight supplies due to oil refineries transitioning from winter to summer grade fuel, coupled with increased petroleum demand resulting from the growing U.S. economy and OPEC threats to cut production have been major factors in steep crude prices, analysts say.