IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Food for Fuel: The Effect of the U.S. Biofuel Mandate on Poverty in India

Many countries have adopted energy policies that promote biofuels as a substitute for gasoline in transportation. For instance, 40% of U.S. grain is now used for energy and this share is expected to rise significantly under the current Renewable Fuels Mandate. This paper examines the distributional effects of the U.S. mandate on India. First, we use a model with endogenous land use to estimate the effect of biofuel policy on the world price of food commodities, in particular rice, wheat, sugar and meat and dairy, which provide almost 70% of Indian food calories. We obtain world price increases of the order of 10% for most of these commodities. Using Indian micro-level survey data for consumption and income, we carefully estimate the effect of these price increases on household welfare. We account for negative consumption impacts as well as the positive effects through wages and income. We consider both perfect and imperfect pass-through from world to domestic prices. We show that the net impact on welfare is negative as well as regressive, i.e., U.S. biofuels policy affects the poorest people the most. About 42 million new poor may be created in India alone. Under imperfect pass-through, this number declines to 16 million. The main implication is that U.S. energy policy that mandates the production of fuel from food may lead to a sharp increase in world poverty.

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.ualberta.ca/~econwps/2012/wp2012-17.pdf
File Function: Full text
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by University of Alberta, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 2012-17.

as
in new window

Length: 46 pages
Date of creation: 01 Aug 2012
Date of revision: 01 Jan 2015
Handle: RePEc:ris:albaec:2012_017
Contact details of provider: Postal: 8-14 HM Tory, Edmonton, Alberta, T6G 2H4
Phone: (780) 492-3406
Fax: (780) 492-3300
Web page: http://www.economics.ualberta.ca/

More information through EDIRC

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. Ural Marchand, Beyza, 2011. "Tariff Pass-Through and the Distributional Effects of Trade Liberalization," Working Papers 2011-22, University of Alberta, Department of Economics.
  2. Gouel, Christophe & Hertel, Thomas, 2006. "Introducing Forest Access Cost Functions into a General Equilibrium Model," GTAP Research Memoranda 2215, Center for Global Trade Analysis, Department of Agricultural Economics, Purdue University.
  3. Antonio M. Bento & Lawrence H. Goulder & Mark R. Jacobsen & Roger H. von Haefen, 2009. "Distributional and Efficiency Impacts of Increased US Gasoline Taxes," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(3), pages 667-99, June.
  4. Madhu Khanna & David Zilberman, 2012. "Modeling The Land-Use And Greenhouse-Gas Implications Of Biofuels," Climate Change Economics (CCE), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 3(03), pages 1250016-1-1.
  5. Surabhi Mittal, 2010. "Structural Shift in Demand for Food: Projections for 2020," Working Papers id:2788, eSocialSciences.
  6. Guido G. Porto, 2003. "Using survey data to assess the distributional effects of trade policy," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3137, The World Bank.
  7. Mitchell, Donald, 2008. "A note on rising food prices," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4682, The World Bank.
  8. CHAKRAVORTY Ujjayant & MAGNE Bertrand & MOREAUX Michel, 2006. "A dynamic model of food and clean energy," LERNA Working Papers 06.10.203, LERNA, University of Toulouse.
  9. Ira N. Gang & Kunal Sen & Myeong-Su Yun, 2008. "Poverty In Rural India: Caste And Tribe," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 54(1), pages 50-70, 03.
  10. Catherine Hausman & Maximilian Auffhammer & Peter Berck, 2012. "Farm Acreage Shocks and Crop Prices: An SVAR Approach to Understanding the Impacts of Biofuels," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 53(1), pages 117-136, September.
  11. repec:inr:wpaper:26086 is not listed on IDEAS
  12. Auffhammer, Maximilian & Schlenker, Wolfram, 2014. "Empirical studies on agricultural impacts and adaptation," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(C), pages 555-561.
  13. Campa, José Manuel & González Mìnguez, Jose Manuel, 2004. "Differences in Exchange Rate Pass-Through in the Euro Area," CEPR Discussion Papers 4389, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  14. Ruttan, Vernon W., 2002. "Productivity Growth In World Agriculture: Sources And Constraints," Staff Papers 14176, University of Minnesota, Department of Applied Economics.
  15. Michael J. Roberts & Wolfram Schlenker, 2010. "Identifying Supply and Demand Elasticities of Agricultural Commodities: Implications for the US Ethanol Mandate," NBER Working Papers 15921, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Guido Porto, 2010. "International Market Access and Poverty in Argentina," CEDLAS, Working Papers 0096, CEDLAS, Universidad Nacional de La Plata.
  17. Chen, Shaohua & Ravallion, Martin, 2008. "The developing world is poorer than we thought, but no less successful in the fight against poverty," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4703, The World Bank.
  18. Mundlak, Yair & Larson, Donald F, 1992. "On the Transmission of World Agricultural Prices," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 6(3), pages 399-422, September.
  19. Chen, Xiaoguang & Huang, Haixiao & Khanna, Madhu, 2011. "Land Use and Greenhouse Gas Implications of Biofuels: Role of Technology and Policy," 2011 Annual Meeting, July 24-26, 2011, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 103216, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  20. José Manuel Campa & Linda S. Goldberg, 2005. "Exchange Rate Pass-Through into Import Prices," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 87(4), pages 679-690, November.
  21. Nicita, Alessandro, 2009. "The price effect of tariff liberalization: Measuring the impact on household welfare," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(1), pages 19-27, May.
  22. Chen, Xiaoguang & Huang, Haixiao & Khanna, Madhu & Önal, Hayri, 2014. "Alternative transportation fuel standards: Welfare effects and climate benefits," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 67(3), pages 241-257.
  23. Cranfield, J. A. L. & Preckel, Paul V. & Eales, James S. & Hertel, Thomas W., 2002. "Estimating consumer demands across the development spectrum: maximum likelihood estimates of an implicit direct additivity model," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(2), pages 289-307, August.
  24. 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.
  25. Gaurav Datt & Jennifer Olmsted, 2004. "Induced Wage Effects of Changes in Food Prices in Egypt," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 40(4), pages 137-166.
  26. Golub, Alla & Hertel, Thomas & Sohngen, Brent, 2008. "Land Use Modeling in Recursively-Dynamic GTAP Framework," GTAP Working Papers 2609, Center for Global Trade Analysis, Department of Agricultural Economics, Purdue University.
  27. Chakravorty, Ujjayant & Hubert, Marie-Helene & Nostbakken, Linda, 2012. "The Long Run Impact of Biofuels on Food Prices," Working Papers 2012-11, University of Alberta, Department of Economics.
  28. Brent Sohngen & Robert Mendelsohn, 2003. "An Optimal Control Model of Forest Carbon Sequestration," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 85(2), pages 448-457.
  29. Deaton, Angus, 1989. "Rice Prices and Income Distribution in Thailand: A Non-parametric Analysis," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 99(395), pages 1-37, Supplemen.
  30. Schade, Burkhard & Wiesenthal, Tobias, 2011. "Biofuels: A model based assessment under uncertainty applying the Monte Carlo method," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 92-126, January.
  31. de Janvry, Alain & Sadoulet, Elisabeth, 2010. "The Global Food Crisis and Guatemala: What Crisis and for Whom?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(9), pages 1328-1339, September.
  32. Thomas W. Hertel & Wallace E. Tyner & Dileep K. Birur, 2010. "The Global Impacts of Biofuel Mandates," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 1), pages 75-100.
  33. Desai, Sonalde & Dubey, Amaresh & Joshi, Brij Lal & Sen, Mitali & Sharif, Abusaleh & Vanneman, Reeve, 2010. "Human Development in India: Challenges for a Society in Transition," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198065128.
  34. Ravallion, Martin, 1990. "Rural Welfare Effects of Food Price Changes under Induced Wage Responses: Theory and Evidence for Bangladesh," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 42(3), pages 574-85, July.
  35. Ravindranath, N.H. & Sita Lakshmi, C. & Manuvie, Ritumbra & Balachandra, P., 2011. "Biofuel production and implications for land use, food production and environment in India," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(10), pages 5737-5745, October.
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:ris:albaec:2012_017. 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: (Brenda Carrier)

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.