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Economics of Biofuels: An Overview of Policies, Impacts and Prospects

  • Moschini, GianCarlo
  • Cui, Jingbo
  • Lapan, Harvey

This paper provides an overview of the economics of biofuels. It starts by describing the remarkable growth of the biofuel industry over the last decade, with emphasis on developments in the United States, Brazil and the European Union, and it identifies the driving role played by some critical policies. After a brief discussion of the motivations that are commonly argued in favor of biofuels and biofuel policies, the paper presents an assessment of the impacts of biofuels from the economics perspective. In particular, the paper explains the basic analytics of biofuel mandates, reviews several existing studies that have estimated the economic impacts of biofuels, presents some insights from a specific model, and outlines an appraisal of biofuel policies and the environmental impacts of biofuels. The paper concludes with an examination of several open issues and the future prospects of biofuels.

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File URL: http://www.econ.iastate.edu/sites/default/files/publications/papers/p15548-2012-05-24.pdf
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Paper provided by Iowa State University, Department of Economics in its series Staff General Research Papers with number 35548.

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Date of creation: 24 May 2012
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Handle: RePEc:isu:genres:35548
Contact details of provider: Postal: Iowa State University, Dept. of Economics, 260 Heady Hall, Ames, IA 50011-1070
Phone: +1 515.294.6741
Fax: +1 515.294.0221
Web page: http://www.econ.iastate.edu
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  15. Alison Burrell & Maria Blanco & Stephan Hubertus Gay & Martin Henseler & Aikaterini Kavallari & Robert M'barek & Ignacio Perez & Axel Tonini, 2010. "Impacts of the EU Biofuel Target on Agricultural Markets and Land Use - A Comparative Modelling Assessment," JRC-IPTS Working Papers JRC58484, Institute for Prospective and Technological Studies, Joint Research Centre.
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  17. Beghin, John C. & Roland-Holst, David & Van der Mensbrugghe, Dominique, 2002. "Conclusions," Staff General Research Papers 4083, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  18. Xiaoguang Chen & Haixiao Huang & Madhu Khanna & Hayri Önal, 2011. "Meeting the Mandate for Biofuels: Implications for Land Use, Food, and Fuel Prices," NBER Chapters, in: The Intended and Unintended Effects of U.S. Agricultural and Biotechnology Policies, pages 223-267 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  27. Lapan, Harvey E. & Moschini, GianCarlo, 2009. "Biofuels Policies and Welfare: Is the Stick of Mandates Better Than the Carrot of Subsidies?," Staff General Research Papers 13076, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
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  29. Rajagopal, D. & Hochman, G. & Zilberman, D., 2011. "Indirect fuel use change (IFUC) and the lifecycle environmental impact of biofuel policies," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 228-233, January.
  30. Searchinger, Timothy & Heimlich, Ralph & Houghton, R. A. & Dong, Fengxia & Elobeid, Amani & Fabiosa, Jacinto F. & Tokgoz, Simla & Hayes, Dermot J. & Yu, Hun-Hsiang, 2008. "Use of U.S. Croplands for Biofuels Increases Greenhouse Gases Through Emissions from Land-Use Change," Staff General Research Papers 12881, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
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