World Bank: Biofuel Boom Spiking Food Prices
A World Bank report, held from public view for several months, finds strong evidence that increased production of biofuels such as ethanol has caused a sharp climb in the price of foodstuffs worldwide. “The report stands as a blistering rebuke to the Bush’s administration’s unchecked biofuel boosterism,” argues environmental writer Tom Philpott.
Remember a few weeks ago, when The Guardian leaked word of a “secret” World Bank report that essentially blames U.S. and (to a lesser extent) E.U. biofuel policies for causing the global food crisis?
You know, the food crisis that continues to generate excoriating hunger in the global south?
Well, the World Bank quietly released a modified version of the report this week. Actually, The Guardian posted the original bootleg version, dated April 8, a week after its scoop; I missed it at the time.
Well, now I’ve read both versions, which are substantially the same (the new version has a brief additional section discussing other researchers’ takes on biofuel and food prices). My judgment: This is a bombshell, and a stark embarrassment to the Bush administration and biofuel-loving Democrats in Congress.