Courtesy of Reuters we know: more than 5 million barrels of oil that were part of the historic U.S. SPR release were exported to Europe and Asia last month, including top US geopolitical nemesis in the global arena, China, even as U.S. gasoline and diesel prices hit record highs.

The export of crude and fuel is blunting the impact of the moves by U.S. President Joe Biden to lower record pump prices. In a widely mocked call, Biden on Saturday renewed a call for gasoline suppliers to cut their prices, drawing rightful criticism from Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, because going after mom and pop gas stores merely demonstrates just how clueless the handlers of the senile presidential puppet truly are.

About 1 million barrels per day have been drained from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve through October, an unprecedented pace. The drain means SPR inventories fell to the lowest since 1986. US crude futures are above $100 per barrel and gasoline and diesel prices above $5 a gallon in one-fifth of the nation. US officials have said oil prices could be higher if the SPR had not been tapped, and for once they are right. Still, the question looms of what happens to oil prices when the US can no longer sell the SPR amid concerns of a real emergency: we know the answer and the Biden admin won’t like it.

“The SPR remains a critical energy security tool to address global crude oil supply disruptions,” a Department of Energy spokesperson said, adding that the emergency releases helped ensure stable supply of crude oil.

Citing customs data, Reuters traced that the fourth-largest U.S. oil refiner, Phillips 66 shipped about 470,000 barrels of sour crude from the Big Hill SPR storage site in Texas to Trieste, Italy. Trieste is home to a pipeline that sends oil to refineries in central Europe. Meanwhile, Atlantic Trading & Marketing (ATMI), an arm of French oil major TotalEnergies, exported 2 cargoes of 560,000 barrels each. Cargoes of SPR crude were also headed to the Netherlands and to a Reliance refinery in India, an industry source said.

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US troops smuggle 70 oil tankers out of Syria

US occupation forces have reportedly continued looting Syrian oil from the northern Al-Jazeera region of Syria’s Hasakah governate, as a US-military convoy of around 70 oil tankers made their way towards Iraq through the illegal Al-Waleed border crossing on 14 May.

According to local sources in the Al-Yarubiyah countryside, the convoy was accompanied by an additional 15 trucks carrying military equipment bound for Iraq, as well as six armored vehicles.

This comes just one day after 46 US vehicles were reportedly transferred out of Syria through the same border crossing.

US troops and their proxy in northern Syria, the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), are in control of most of the oil fields in Hasakah and Deir Ezzor and have been regularly smuggling Syrian oil out of the country to sell it abroad.

Dozens of similar US convoys have been reported over the last year and a half. On 18 December 2021, nearly one hundred oil tankers were smuggled into northern Iraq through the same illegal crossing.

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How the U.S. Paid for Putin’s War on Ukraine

Did the US inadvertently finance Putin’s war on Ukraine with short-sighted, politically motivated, and irrational energy and climate policies? And did those failed policies fuel inflation to the obscene rate of 7.87%? Were the geopolitical consequences and the enormous economic costs of those policies predictable and avoidable? The short answers are yes, yes, and yes. Anyone in the Biden Administration could have “done the math” and seen how rising energy prices would continue to fill Putin’s coffers, funding his military build-up, and contribute to runaway inflation here at home.

The oil and gas industry is the cornerstone of the US economy and will continue to be for years to come. Crude oil and natural gas prices impact not only the price of gas at the pump but virtually everything we buy. Petroleum is an ingredient in all types of consumer goods, which are then transported using ships, planes, trains, and trucks fueled with petroleum products. Natural gas powers over 40% of our electrical grid, heats our homes, and is a substantial component in the cost of manufacturing almost everything.

Crude oil and natural gas prices also impact the economic health and behavior of global adversaries like Russia and China. Russia is one of the top three largest oil and natural gas producers in the world. According to the Russian Ministry of Finance, oil and natural gas export revenues constituted 36% of their total federal revenues in 2021. That amounts to over 9 trillion rubles or $121 billion in 2021 alone. Russia sold 48% of its oil and 72% of its natural gas production to European countries.

By contrast, in 2021, America bought only 1% of Russia’s crude oil and none of their natural gas in 2021. 1% doesn’t sound like much but it does amount to 245 million barrels and over $16 billion in revenue to Russia (@$65/barrel average). But our imports of Russian crude are only a small part of the story.

The real story of how Putin financed his war on Ukraine is about the rapidly rising price of crude oil and natural gas over the past several years. If the market price of oil and natural gas had remained relatively stable, Russia would only have made modest profits on its fossil fuel exports. As prices rose, Putin began making a killing and is using those windfalls to build and maintain his war machine.

Russia’s total cost (excluding taxes) of crude oil production is estimated to be between $32 and $44 per barrel. In 2019, the average price for crude was about $60 per barrel. Assuming a production cost of say $40 per barrel, Russia earned a profit of $20 per barrel. But when the average price reached $100 per barrel, their profits triple to $60 per barrel. For reference, Russia’s baseline oil production rose to 11.5 million barrels per day in 2021 and they exported 4.7 million barrels per day.

This translates to a total of 1.7 billion barrels exported in 2021 alone (4.7 x 365). A reasonable crude oil price of $60 per barrel and a profit of $20 per barrel nets Russia $34 billion per year. When crude is over $100 as it is today, Russia makes $60 a barrel and a whopping $102 billion per year! That’s a $68 billion windfall ($102-$34), simply because the US allowed the market price of crude to become artificially and unnecessarily high.

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September 11 Victims Want the US to Seize and Sell Iranian Oil

Families of victims of the September 11th attacks have asked the US government to seize Iranian oil that might be on a US-owned ship in Asia.

Even though Iran had nothing to do with the September 11th attacks, a US court has ordered Tehran to pay out more than $3 billion to the families of 9/11 victims. The ruling doesn’t make much sense since nobody has ever seriously accused Iran of being behind the attacks.

But the families are still seeking the money, and since Iran would never voluntarily pay, they are asking the US to seize and sell the Iranian oil.

The oil tanker Suez Rajan is under federal investigation for allegedly carrying oil placed on the ship by the National Iranian Oil Co. and the National Iranian Tanker Corp, which are both under US sanctions. The 9/11 families submitted a court filing on Thursday night asking for the oil to be taken.

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America last: Biden is selling 1/3 of oil reserves he’s releasing to China and India

The Biden administration is releasing 50 million barrels of oil from the nation’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve to lower gas prices.

Because, they say, we cannot be vulnerable to volatile energy supplies.

There’s more to the story.

First, not all of those barrels are going to U.S. consumers. A total of 18 million are expected to be sold to China and India, according to Fox Business.

Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm indicated Tuesday that the congressionally-approved sale of those 18 million barrels will help drive down U.S. oil prices, presumably by offsetting international oil shortages.

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