Environmental Kuznets Curve, a Mirage? A Non-parametric Analysis for MENA Countries

Abstract

This paper investigates the relationship between carbon dioxide emissions and gross domestic product in the Middle East and North Africa region using World Bank data covering the period 1980 to 2010 on the eve of the Arab Spring. Unlike extant studies using parametric models, the results provide evidence against the postulated inverted-U shaped relationship between pollution and the level of economic development. Using a non-parametric model, new evidence is found against the existence of a carbon Environmental Kuznets Curve in contrast to previous studies on the region. The paper provides a cautionary note against the use of parametric models to draw policy implications about the trade-off (or lack thereof) between environmental quality and the level of economic development.

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Fig. 1

Notes

  1. 1.

    More recently, Ogundipe et al. (2014) used income inequality to explain the EKC relationship in Africa.

  2. 2.

    It is worth mentioning that the data were restricted to the 1980–2010 period since these data constituted the most complete and balanced panel for the MENA countries. The data are also important because the evidence drew from the period ending at the eve of Arab Spring.

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Correspondence to Ali Fakih.

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Fakih, A., Marrouch, W. Environmental Kuznets Curve, a Mirage? A Non-parametric Analysis for MENA Countries. Int Adv Econ Res 25, 113–119 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11294-019-09724-9

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Keywords

  • Carbon emissions
  • Environmental Kuznets curve
  • Non-parametric regression

JEL Classification

  • C14
  • C23
  • Q54