President Clinton decided to release 30 million barrels of crude oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, but the impact on gasoline and diesel fuel prices is uncertain.

American refineries use about 14 million barrels of oil a day and the country consumes 18.6 million barrels of oil products daily, so oil industry analysts believe Clinton’s action will have only a short-term psychological impact, according to CNNfn.

The main reason for Clinton’s decision was to make more home-heating oil available to people in the Northeast, where natural gas heat is not available, said Energy Secretary Bill Richardson.

Another goal is to lower diesel fuel prices to provide relief to the trucking industry, he said.