Congressman Mike Michaud has sent a letter to President Obama requesting that he use everything at his disposal to mitigate current and future energy price spikes. One of the ideas pushed by Michaud is using the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) to alleviate rapid energy price escalations.
"The price of oil is hitting historic levels, and we need to be ready to act," said Michaud. "In Maine, the impact of these high prices can be particularly harmful, especially given how many families use oil to heat their homes. We must look into all options at our disposal to avoid the price spikes of 2008. The long term solution is moving toward cleaner, domestic sources of energy. But in the short term, we can't afford to take options off the table. Using the Strategic Petroleum Reserve in the past has alleviated rapid energy price escalations and should be considered again."
The full text of the letter Michaud sent the President.
February 25, 2011
The Honorable Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
Dear President Obama:
As oil prices continue to climb, I hope that you will seriously consider using the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) to alleviate rapid energy price escalations that could stall our economic recovery. All options should be on the table, and your Administration, as well as the U.S. Congress, must be ready to act.
Nearly every Mainer is affected by the most immediate impacts of a spike in the cost of oil. Families could face higher costs when heating their homes at a time when fuel costs are already unaffordable for thousands. With limited public transportation options, most Mainers rely on a vehicle to bring them to work, school and the grocery store. When gas prices rise when budgets are already tight, Mainers will be forced to make some very difficult choices just to make ends meet.
It's not just individuals and families that are affected, it's businesses too. Even a modest increase in the price of oil can have a damaging ripple effect on the economy as a whole. It becomes more expensive for companies to ship their products to market, hurting businesses that are already struggling in a tough economy. It costs more for our domestic manufacturers to run their factories. As the price of transportation increases, families and businesses are less likely to travel. At the end of the day, every one of these problems trickles down to the average Mainer and hurts our economic recovery.
In the past, releasing oil from the SPR has led to a swift and considerable decrease in prices. Mainers cannot afford high gas prices when they are already dealing with the impacts of a tough economy. I sincerely hope that you will consider using the SPR to help prevent an increase in the price of oil that could further damage our economy.
MICHAEL H. MICHAUD
Member of Congress