LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) — This week President Joe Biden announced historic action in hopes to relieve pressure at the gas pump. He plans to release one million barrels a day from the strategic petroleum reserve and initiate a “Use it or Lose it” policy so that petroleum companies have to start producing on federal leases or pay fees.

Louisiana oil and gas industry experts have not seen eye to eye with the president during his campaign and time in office. This does not help, partly because they believe his actions work to phase out the oil and gas production when it is desperately needed.

President Joe Biden called the U.S.’s largest release of the national reserve “a historic amount of supply for a historic amount of time”, but Louisiana Mid-Continent Oil & Gas Association (LMOGA) President Tommy Faucheux argued, “It’s like a Band-Aid on a much larger problem.”

Faucheux said if we want more predictable gas prices in the future, what we actually need is more consistent policy. Biden’s administration has not allowed any oil and gas lease sales on federal land or waters, blocking any that have gotten through.

“What that does is it puts the oil production that we know is possible in the Gulf of Mexico in jeopardy because we don’t know what the companies will be allowed to do in the years ahead,” Faucheux said. But the president argues petroleum companies are sitting on 9,000 federal lands permits without producing a gallon, and he wants them fined through a “Use it or Lose it policy.” As President Biden put it, “Those sitting on unused leases or idle well will either have to start producing or pay for their inaction.”

Mike Moncla, President of the Louisiana Oil & Gas Association (LOGA), said President Biden is “very, very uneducated in understanding how our business works.” LOGA stated that 76% of the current 47,000 federal leases are in use, which is the highest in history.

Moncla explained, “There’s always going to be oil and gas leases that oil companies purchase that they don’t drill on. They got to go out and do studies and find out if there’s oil below.”

The one million barrels a day will have an effect on prices, but time will only tell how much and how soon. Faucheux told me in recent weeks about 17 million barrels are being worked through the refining system every day, so it will make a dent.