The Obama administration announced Thursday it will release 30 million barrels of oil from the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve.
The move comes as part of an international effort to reduce crude prices and resuscitate economic recovery in the world's most industrialized nations.
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"We are taking this action in response to the ongoing loss of crude oil due to supply disruptions in Libya and other countries and their impact on the global economic recovery," Energy Secretary Steven Chu said Thursday.
The Libyan uprisings have resulted in a loss of about 1.5 million barrels of oil a day.
"As we move forward, we will continue to monitor the situation and stand ready to take additional steps if necessary," Chu said.
Typically the government only releases oil from emergency reserves in extreme cases like hurricanes.
The last time the reserves were used was in 2008 following Hurricanes Gustav and Ike.