Senator wants Oklahoma to create its own Strategic Petroleum Reserve

Nathan Dahm | Oklahoma Senate


If a bill becomes law as proposed by Sen. Nathan Dahm of Broken Arrow, Oklahoma could become the first state in the nation to develop its own Strategic Petroleum Reserve, one copied after the national Strategic Petroleum Reserve.

The Senator introduced SB205 which calls for the creation of a petroleum reserve that will hold up to 15 million barrels of crude oil. Under the bill, the legislature would be required every fiscal year to appropriate any surplus funds to establish and maintain the State Strategic Petroleum Reserve.

An email request for more details from Sen. Dahm was not answered this week. However, as outlined in the filing, such a proposed reserve would be maintained by the Corporation Commission which would have the responsibility of also creating rules necessary to run the reserve.

The bill defined the reserve as “state-owned oil stocks maintained in oil wells within the boundaries of” Oklahoma. Any release of the 15 million barrels in the reserve would be upon an executive order of the Governor or by direction of the legislature.

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SB205 explained such a release of oil from the reserve would require evidence of one of several conditions or circumstances.

1. The state or any oil-producing entity operating in the state
faces a disruption in supply;
2. An exchange agreement with another country, state, political
subdivision, or oil company is entered into;
3. The Governor has declared a state of emergency;
4. Non-emergency sales are deemed necessary to raise revenue or lessen supply disruptions; and
5. The price of gas has increased by more than twenty-five
percent (25.0%) within a three-month period; provided, oil released to service stations under this act shall be used to lower the cost of gas and diesel to consumers in this state.