Another interesting report out last week on biofuels. This one is entitled, “Biofuels play minor role in local food prices,” and was produced by Ecofys, a Dutch consulting firm that does work regularly for the European Commission and sometimes for NGOs and the biofuels industry.
The key takeaway from the Ecofys report (found here: http://www.ecofys.com/en/news/report-biofuels-play-minor-role-in-local-food-prices/)
“The historic impact of EU biofuels demand until 2010 increased world grain prices by about 1-2% and, without any cap on crop-based biofuel production may lead to another 1% increase through 2020.”
Additionally: “Systemic factors, like reduced reserves, food waste, speculation, transportation issues, storage costs and problems, and hoarding play a much larger role in local food prices” than biofuels, Ecofys concluded.
Does these conclusions sound familiar? They should. Here’s a list of other studies from other reputable institutions — including the European Commission, the European Union’s executive — that have reached similar conclusions like what Ecofys has just churned out:
· World Bank (Baffes and Dennis), 2013, “Long-term drivers of food prices”http://econ.worldbank.org/external/default/main?pagePK=64165259&piPK=64165421&theSitePK=469382&menuPK=64166093&entityID=000158349_20130521131725
· The European Commission report on the implementation of the EU Renewable Energy Directive (see p.12) http://ec.europa.eu/energy/renewables/reports/doc/com_2013_0175_res_en.pdf
· The Institute for International Trade Negotiations (ICONE) in Brazil http://www.iconebrasil.com.br/publication/study/details/568