IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

The impact of biofuel growth on agriculture: Why is the range of estimates so wide?

  • Zhang, Wei
  • Yu, Elaine A.
  • Rozelle, Scott
  • Yang, Jun
  • Msangi, Siwa

The rapid expansion of biofuel production has generated considerable interest within the body of empirical economic literature that has sought to understand the impact of biofuel growth on the global food economy. While the consensus within the literature is that biofuel emergence is likely to have some effect on future world agricultural market, there is a considerable range in the estimated size of the impact. Despite the importance of this topic to policy makers, there has been no study that has tried to reconcile the differences among various outlook studies. This paper undertakes an in-depth review of some key outlook studies which quantify the impacts of biofuels on agricultural commodities, and which are based on either general-equilibrium (GE) or partial-equilibrium (PE) modeling approaches. We attempt to reconcile the systematic differences in the estimated impacts of biofuel production growth on the prospective prices and production of three major feedstock commodities, maize, sugar cane, and oilseeds across these studies. Despite the fact that all models predict positive impacts on prices and production, there are large differences among the studies. Our findings point to a number of key assumptions and structural differences that seem to jointly drive the variations we observe, across these studies. The differences among the PE models are mainly due to differences in the design of scenarios, the presence or absence of biofuel trade, and the structural way in which agricultural and energy market linkages are modeled. The differences among the GE models are likely to be driven by model assumptions on agricultural land supply, the inclusion of the byproducts, and assumptions on crude oil prices and the elasticity of substitution between petroleum and biofuels.

If 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.

File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0306919212001273
Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Food Policy.

Volume (Year): 38 (2013)
Issue (Month): C ()
Pages: 227-239

as
in new window

Handle: RePEc:eee:jfpoli:v:38:y:2013:i:c:p:227-239
DOI: 10.1016/j.foodpol.2012.12.002
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/foodpol

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Timilsina, Govinda R. & Beghin, John C. & van der Mensbrugghe, Dominique & Mevel, Simon, 2010. "The impacts of biofuel targets on land-use change and food supply : a global CGE assessment," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5513, The World Bank.
  2. Arndt, Channing & Benfica, Rui & Tarp, Finn & Thurlow, James & Uaiene, Rafael, 2008. "Biofuels, poverty, and growth: A computable general equilibrium analysis of Mozambique," IFPRI discussion papers 803, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  3. repec:dau:papers:123456789/6497 is not listed on IDEAS
  4. Jerome Dumortier & Dermot J. Hayes & Miguel Carriquiry & Fengxia Dong & Xiaodong Du & Amani Elobeid & Jacinto F. Fabiosa & Simla Tokgoz, 2011. "Sensitivity of Carbon Emission Estimates from Indirect Land-Use Change," Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 33(4), pages 673-673.
  5. Decreux, Yvan & Valin, Hugo, 2007. "MIRAGE, Updated Version of the Model for Trade Policy Analysis: Focus on Agriculture and Dynamics," Working Papers 7284, TRADEAG - Agricultural Trade Agreements.
  6. Elobeid, Amani & Tokgoz, Simla, 2008. "AJAE Appendix for “Removing Distortions in the U.S. Ethanol Market: What Does It Imply for the United States and Brazil?â€," American Journal of Agricultural Economics Appendices, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 90(4), November.
  7. Amani Elobeid & Simla Tokgoz, 2006. "Removal of U.S. Ethanol Domestic and Trade Distortions: Impact on U.S. and Brazilian Ethanol Markets," Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute (FAPRI) Publications 06-wp427, Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute (FAPRI) at Iowa State University.
  8. Coyle, William T., 2007. "The Future of Biofuels: A Global Perspective," Amber Waves, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service, November.
  9. Mohamed Hedi Bchir & Yvan Decreux & Jean-Louis Guérin & Sébastien Jean, 2002. "MIRAGE, a Computable General Equilibrium Model for Trade Policy Analysis," Working Papers 2002-17, CEPII research center.
  10. Thaeripour, Farzad & Hertel, Thomas W. & Tyner, Wallace E. & Beckman, Jayson F. & Birur, Dileep K., 2008. "Biofuels and their By-Products: Global Economic and Environmental Implications," 2008 Annual Meeting, July 27-29, 2008, Orlando, Florida 6452, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
  11. Martin Banse & Hans van Meijl & Andrzej Tabeau & Geert Woltjer, 2008. "Will EU biofuel policies affect global agricultural markets?," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 35(2), pages 117-141, June.
  12. Elobeid, Amani E. & Tokgoz, Simla, 2007. "Removing Distortions in the U.S. Ethanol Market: What Does It Imply for the United States and Brazil?," 2007 Annual Meeting, July 29-August 1, 2007, Portland, Oregon TN 9808, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
  13. Wobst, Peter, 2000. "Why the poor care about partial versus general equilibrium effects - Part I," TMD discussion papers 60, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  14. Mark W. Rosegrant & Tingju Zhu & Siwa Msangi & Timothy Sulser, 2008. "Global Scenarios for Biofuels: Impacts and Implications ," Review of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 30(3), pages 495-505.
  15. Mitchell, Donald, 2008. "A note on rising food prices," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4682, The World Bank.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:jfpoli:v:38:y:2013:i:c:p:227-239. See general 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: (Shamier, Wendy)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.