Corn could reach $6.50 a bushel by 2025, according to a Department of Energy study. The study predicts that if the “25 by 25” Senate proposal is enacted, it could push corn ethanol production up to 25 billion gallons by 2025, triggering much higher corn prices.

The study shows that the Senate proposal also would greatly increase U.S. corn demand, and significantly impact food and feed markets. The conclusion is that it would eventually lead to a cut, or elimination, of U.S. corn exports.

The rising corn prices will impact the prices of other food and feed products — and ultimately U.S. economic growth. The study points out that this impact is highly uncertain, but potentially larger than the direct impact of rising energy prices alone.

The study also predicts that the “25 by 25” policy will create dramatic increases in biofuel consumption and reduce the consumption of petroleum-based fuels. To meet the renewable-fuel-standard requirements, it will take nearly four times the amount of fuel from renewable sources than is used today.

Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), requested the study for analysis of the “25 by 25” proposal, which requires that 25 percent of electricity sales be produced from renewable sources by 2025, as well as 25 percent of liquid-motor-transportation-fuel sales also be derived from renewable sources by that time.

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