Land allocation between food and energy

Ujjayant Chakravorty, Marie-Hélène Hubert, and Michel Moreaux


Many countries are promoting biofuels as a substitute for scarce oil. This paper develops a dynamic model of land allocation between food and energy and shows how the model can be calibrated using standard optimization techniques. Some possible implications of the trade-offs between food and energy are discussed. Specifically, we show that the effect of mandates is mainly felt through increased land conversion, which increases indirect carbon emissions. Crude oil prices do not decrease significantly because of leakages.


biofuel; food; energy; land allocation; mandate;

JEL codes

  • N50: General, International, or Comparative
  • Q18: Agricultural Policy • Food Policy
  • Q38: Government Policy
  • Q42: Alternative Energy Sources

See also

Published in

Frontiers of Economics in China, vol. 9, n. 1, 2014, pp. 52–69