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Report: Biden expected to announce plan for massive release of oil

President Biden could announce as early as Thursday a plan to release 1 million barrels of oil a day from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve for as long as 180 days, a person familiar with the matter told The New York Times late Wednesday.

The White House has been considering ways to lower gasoline prices across the nation, which skyrocketed in the wake of the Russian invasion of Ukraine; in March, the average price of a gallon of gas hit a high of $4.17, six cents higher than the previous record set in 2008.

Biden's public schedule for Thursday states he is scheduled to deliver remarks in the afternoon on his administration's "actions to reduce the impact of [Russian President Vladimir] Putin's price hike on energy prices and lower gas price at the pump for American families." The price of the American crude oil benchmark dropped about 4 percent Wednesday evening once reports began surfacing about Biden's plan.

The Strategic Petroleum Reserve was created after the 1973 energy crisis, and comes into use when the United States experiences an increase in demand or low supply, the Times says. It currently holds about 550 million barrels, with a capacity of roughly 714 million barrels.