Air Pollution and Economic Growth in MENA Countries: Testing EKC Hypothesis
The Environmental Kuznets Curve (EKC) hypothesis is one of the models describing the relationship between economic growth and environmental quality. The purpose of this study is to investigate the relationship between economic growth and the two environmental indicators (SO2 emissions, SO2 emissions) in 22 Middle East and North Africa (MENA) countries. Based on a country level analysis and by using time series data, the study revealed that there is an evidence for SO2 - EKC for Algeria, Tunisia, Yemen, Morocco, Turkey and Libya. Our findings for CO2 emissions also support an inverted U-shape pattern associated with the EKC hypothesis for Tunisia, Morocco, Turkey and Jordan. The results also showed that MENA region as a whole did not show EKC for SO2 emissions and CO2 emissions. Stricter policy measures and higher demands for the adoption of best environmental practices are required in order to generate an inverted U shaped curve relationship between GDP per capita and environmental degradation.