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Environmental Impacts of Emerging Biomass Feedstock Markets: Energy, Agriculture, and the Farmer

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Abstract

The tighter linkages between energy and crop markets due to recent climate and energy legislation in the US have large potential environmental impacts beyond carbon sequestration and climate mitigation. These range from effects on water quality and quantity, soil erosion, habitat and biodiversity preservation. These impacts are very location and management-decision specific, as they are the product of atomistic decisions and depend on soil and landscape specific variables. In order to fully understand the effects of biomass markets, the new and stronger linkages and feedback effects between national- and global-scale energy and commodity markets must be properly understood and identified using an integrated perspective. We discuss the various interactions between agricultural and energy markets and their environmental impacts for existing biomass crops and detail how these interactions may be strengthened with the emergence of corn stover as a second generation biofuel feedstock. The tighter coupling of land use and management and energy systems needs to be accounted for to ensure that we have accurate indicators of the sustainability of biomass as an energy resource.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) at Iowa State University in its series Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) Publications with number 11-wp526.

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Date of creation: Dec 2011
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Handle: RePEc:ias:cpaper:11-wp526

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Keywords: Energy and Commodity markets linkages; Integrated energy system assessment; Environmental impacts; Biofuels.;

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  1. Foreman, Linda F., 2006. "Characteristics and Production Costs of U.S. Corn Farms, 2001," Economic Information Bulletin 7205, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
  2. Xiaodong Du & Dermot J. Hayes, 2008. "Impact of Ethanol Production on U.S. and Regional Gasoline Prices and on the Profitability of the U.S. Oil Refinery Industry, The," Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) Publications 08-wp467, Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) at Iowa State University.
  3. Simla Tokgoz & Amani Elobeid & Jacinto F. Fabiosa & Dermot J. Hayes & Bruce A. Babcock & Tun-Hsiang (Edward) Yu & Fengxia Dong & Chad E. Hart & John C. Beghin, 2007. "Emerging Biofuels: Outlook of Effects on U.S. Grain, Oilseed, and Livestock Markets," Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) Publications 07-sr101, Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) at Iowa State University.
  4. Gal Hochman & Deepak Rajagopal & David Zilberman, 2010. "Are Biofuels the Culprit? OPEC, Food, and Fuel," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(2), pages 183-87, May.
  5. Hayes, Dermot J. & Babcock, Bruce A. & Fabiosa, Jacinto F. & Tokgoz, Simla & Elobeid, Amani & Yu, Tun-Hsiang & Dong, Fengxia & Hart, Chad E. & Chavez, Eddie & Pan, Suwen & Carriquiry, Miguel A. & Dumo, 2009. "Biofuels: Potential Production Capacity, Effects on Grain and Livestock Sectors, and Implications for Food Prices and Consumers," Staff General Research Papers 31340, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  6. Roman Keeney & Thomas W. Hertel, 2009. "The Indirect Land Use Impacts of United States Biofuel Policies: The Importance of Acreage, Yield, and Bilateral Trade Responses," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 91(4), pages 895-909.
  7. Keeney, Roman & Hertel, Thomas, 2008. "The Indirect Land Use Impacts of U.S. Biofuel Policies: The Importance of Acreage, Yield, and Bilateral Trade Responses," GTAP Working Papers 2810, Center for Global Trade Analysis, Department of Agricultural Economics, Purdue University.
  8. Du, Xiaodong & Hayes, Dermot J., 2010. "The Impact of Ethanol Production on U.S. And Regional Gasoline Markets," Staff General Research Papers 31483, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
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