The Trade-off Between Bioenergy and Emissions When Land Is Scarce
AbstractAgricultural biofuels require the use of scarce land, and this land has opportunity cost. We explore the objective function of a social planner who includes a land constraint in the optimization decision to minimize environmental cost. The results show that emissions should be measured on a per acre basis. Conventional agricultural life cycle assessments for biofuels report carbon emissions on a per gallon basis, thereby ignoring the implications of land scarcity and implicitly assuming an infinite supply of the inputs needed for production. Switchgrass and corn are then modeled as competing alternatives to show how the inclusion of a land constraint can influence life cycle rankings and alter policy conclusions.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Agricultural and Applied Economics Association in its series 2011 Annual Meeting, July 24-26, 2011, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with number 103246.
Date of creation: 2011
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biofuels; biomass; energy policy; land use; life cycle analysis; Agricultural and Food Policy; Environmental Economics and Policy; Q16; Q48; Q58;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- Q16 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - R&D; Agricultural Technology; Biofuels; Agricultural Extension Services
- Q48 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Energy - - - Government Policy
- Q58 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environmental Economics: Government Policy
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-AGR-2011-05-07 (Agricultural Economics)
- NEP-ALL-2011-05-07 (All new papers)
- NEP-ENE-2011-05-07 (Energy Economics)
- NEP-ENV-2011-05-07 (Environmental Economics)
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