US 2012 Biofuel Statistics: total production, acreage, ghg emissions

May 9, 2015

USDA ERS: US Bioenergy Statistics - Feedstocks CORN Millions of bushels produced in 2011/2012 Marketing Year: 13,516 MIllions of bushels used for ethanol production: 5,011 Percentage of corn used for ethanol production: 30.5 SOY Millions of pounds produced (plus existing stocks) in 2010/2011 Marketing Year: 22,453 Millions of pounds used for biodiesel: 2,700 Percentage of soy used for biodiesel production: 13.48 SOURCE for the above: USDA Economic Research Service, US Bioenergy Statistics Overview [online] accessed 2/13/2013 CORN ACREAGE DEVOTED TO BIOFUELS “The amount of additional land and displaced crops associated with increased biofuel production differs by region. If the RFS targets are met, total cropland is projected to increase by 1.6 percent over baseline conditions by 2015, with corn acreage expanding by 3.5 percent and accounting for most of the cropland increase. While corn acreage expands in every region, traditional corn growing areas would likely see the largest increases—up 8.6 percent in the Northern Plains, 1.7 percent in the Corn Belt, and 2.8 percent in Lake States. Prices are expected to increase slightly for most crops compared with the baseline, although the price increase could be reduced if corn yields increase at a faster rate than expected.” piii “To meet the RFS, roughly 35 percent of domestic corn production will be needed to produce the 15 billion gallons of ethanol.” RFS= renewable fuel standard act by 2015 p.1 GHG EMISSIONS FROM BIOFUELS "Expanding domestic production and the use of biofuels can both enhance energy security and lower GHG emissions due to reduced fossil fuel combustion. The various phases of corn feedstock and ethanol production, however, also contribute to GHG emissions, including carbon dioxide (CO2), nitrous oxide (N2O), and methane (CH4). Corn is an energy intensive crop due to high energy and fertilizer requirements. At the same time, conversion of idled cropland and pastureland to crop production releases stored carbon once the vegetation is removed and the soil disturbed. Consequently, a given quantity of biofuel that displaces the use of fossil fuel may result in only a modest reduction or possibly an increase in net GHG emissions.” p.10 NUTRIENT AND CHEMICAL USE “Increasing biofuels’ demand for feedstocks may result in increased use of nutrients and pesticides as cultivated land and corn acreage expand.” p9 IMPACTS OF BIOFUEL ON WATER SUPPLY “Expansion of biofuel feedstock production has the potential to increase water demand due to ethanol processing requirements and, more signifi cantly, changes in irrigation” p9 Source for the above (corn acrage devoted to biofuels): Scott A. Malcolm, Marcel Aillery, Marca Weinberg, “Ethanol and a Changing Agricultural Landscape”, USDA ERS economic research Report no. 86, November 2009, available at: For more info consult following googledoc:


Source: Scott A. Malcolm, Marcel Aillery, Marca Weinberg, “Ethanol and a Changing Agricultural Landscape,” USDA ERS economic research Report no. 86, November, 2009.

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