The Associated Press reports that the Energy Department has canceled oil shipments into the Strategic Petroleum Reserve beginning in July when the current purchase contract expires.
On Tuesday, Congress passed legislation
to stop adding oil to the Strategic Petroleum Reserve until crude oil prices fall to below $75 a barrel. Although the measure was largely symbolic, apparently the message was heard.
The Bush administration has been opposed to the idea, saying there is no evidence that suspending shipments will affect the price of oil or gasoline in a meaningful way.
According to USA Today, Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah told President Bush during the president's Mideast visit that he is powerless to bring down rising gas prices, dashing hopes that the oil-rich kingdom would boost supply to meet skyrocketing global demand.
According to AP, the Energy Department said it will not sign contracts for new shipments of 76,000 barrels of oil a day for the six-month period beginning July 1.