Following the Main Street Lending Facility’s expansion to larger companies and a move to buy up to 1 MMbbl of crude for the emergency petroleum reserve, U.S. Energy Department officials say they plan to continue efforts to help struggling oil and gas producers, especially the small ones.

Speaking this week to members of the Texas Alliance of Energy Producers, Assistant Secretary for Fossil Energy Steve Winberg said if Congress appropriates money for the department, its intent will again be to purchase oil from U.S. producers. The department’s initial plan to buy up to 30 MMbbl for the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) failed to secure funding. Congress is currently working on another stimulus package.

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