Commodity Price Volatility in the Biofuel Era: An Examination of the Linkage between Energy and Agricultural Markets
In: The Intended and Unintended Effects of U.S. Agricultural and Biotechnology Policies
AbstractAgricultural and energy commodity prices have traditionally exhibited relatively low â even negative correlation. However, the recent increases in biofuel production have altered the agriculture-energy relationship in a fundamental way. The amount of corn utilized for ethanol production in the US has increased from 5% in 2001 to over one-third by the end of the decade. This increase has drawn corn previously sold to other uses (exports, food, feed), as well as acreage devoted to other crops (e.g., oilseeds and other grains). In addition, there has been an increase in the demand for production inputs, especially fertilizers, which are heavily energy-intensive. In short, the previous âbiofuel decadeâ has led to significant changes in the US, and indeed the global economy. In the next five years, the U.S. Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) envisions a further boost of ethanol production to 15 billion gallons per year. This might be expected to further strengthen the linkage between energy prices and agricultural commodity markets. However, unless oil prices rise sharply, it is likely that the RFS will be binding in 2015 â that is, the amount of ethanol consumed will be determined by government mandates rather than by the relative price of oil vs. corn-based ethanol. Under such a scenario, with an even larger share of corn production going to ethanol, and with that source of demand potentially becoming unresponsive to price, there is potential for significant increases in commodity market volatility. Indeed, we estimate that, in the presence of a binding RFS, the inherent volatility in the US coarse grains market will rise by about one-quarter. And the volatility of the US coarse grains price to supply side shocks in that market will rise by nearly one-half. Under a high oil price scenario, we expect that, rather than the RFS binding, the binding constraint is likely to be the âblend wallâ, i.e. the legal % content of ethanol in gasoline used by regular automob
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
This chapter was published in:
This item is provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Chapters with number 12113.
Contact details of provider:
Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC
Other versions of this item:
- Hertel, Thomas W. & Beckman, Jayson F., 2010. "Commodity Price Volatility in the Biofuel Era: An Examination of the Linkage between Energy and Agricultural Markets," 2010 Annual Meeting, July 25-27, 2010, Denver, Colorado 60857, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
- Hertel, Thomas & Beckman, Jayson, 2010. "Commodity Price Volatility in the Biofuel Era: An Examination of the Linkage between Energy and Agricultural Markets," GTAP Working Papers 3214, Center for Global Trade Analysis, Department of Agricultural Economics, Purdue University.
- Thomas W. Hertel & Jayson Beckman, 2011. "Commodity Price Volatility in the Biofuel Era: An Examination of the Linkage Between Energy and Agricultural Markets," NBER Working Papers 16824, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- C68 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Computable General Equilibrium Models
- Q1 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture
- Q4 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Energy
You can help add them by filling out this form.
CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
This item has more than 25 citations. To prevent cluttering this page, these citations are listed on a separate page. reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.Access and download statisticsgeneral information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ().
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.