Analysis of Environmental Degradation and Its Determinants in Nigeria: New Evidence from ARDL and Causality Approaches

  • Wasiu ADEKUNLE Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG), Lagos, Nigeria
  • Beatrice. O. OMO-IKIRODAH University of Benin, Edo State, Nigeria
  • Olutosin COLLINS BOWEN University, Osun State, Nigeria
  • Andrew ADENIYI University of Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria
  • Abubakar BAGUDO Kebbi State University of Science and Technology, Kebbi State, Nigeria
  • Risikat O. MOSOBALAJE Emmanuel Alayande College of Education, Oyo State, Nigeria
  • Safiyyah OLADEPO University of Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria


This paper extends the previous studies to re-examine the functional relations and causal links between environmental degradation and its possible determinants in Nigeria, covering 1977 to 2015. With the aid of ARDL model estimation, the study found a positive relationship between economic growth and environmental degradation (measured by carbon emission). A positive relation was also established between energy consumption and carbon emission. Similarly, this study reported a positive relationship between transport services in the import and export sectors and carbon emission. Through the Granger causality test, the study established a unidirectional causality running from carbon emission to economic growth. Similarly, there was a unidirectional causality running from economic growth to transport services in the export sector. Based on these findings, there is an increasing need for the authorities to regulate economic activities that directly and indirectly contribute to systematic environmental degradation in Nigeria.


[1] Agarana, S. A., Bishop, S.A. and Agboola, O. O. 2017. Minimizing Carbon Emissions from Transportation Projects in Sub-Saharan Africa Cities Using Mathematical Model: A Focus on Lagos, Nigeria. Procedia Manufacturing, 7: 596-601.
[2] Akpan, G. E. and Akpan, U. F. 2012. Electricity Consumption, Carbon Emissions and Economic Growth in Nigeria. International Journal of Energy Economics and Policy, 4 (2): 292-396.
[3] Alam, J. 2014. On the Relationship between Economic Growth and CO2 Emissions: The Bangladesh Experience. Journal of Economics and Finance, 5(6): 36-41.
[4] Alege, P. O. and Ogundipe, A. A. 2013. Environmental Quality and Economic Growth in Nigeria: A fractional cointegration analysis. International Journal of Development and Sustainability, 2(2): 580-596.
[5] Annicchiarico, B., Bennato, R. and Chini, E. Z. 2014. 150 Years of Italian CO2 Emissions and Economic Growth. CREATES Research Paper No. 2014-2.
[6] Appiah, K., Du, J., Musah, A.-A. I. and Afriyie, S. 2017. Investigation of the Relationship between Economic Growth and Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Emissions as Economic Structure Changes: Evidence from Ghana. Resources and Environment, 7(6): 160-167.
[7] Asaju, K. and Arome, S. 2015. Environmental Degradation and Sustainable Development in Nigeria: The Need for Environmental Education. American Journal of Social Sciences, 3(3): 56-61.
[8] Atte-Oudeyi, B., Kestemont, B. and Meulemeester, J.-L. D. 2016. Road Transport, Economic Growth and Carbon Dioxide Emissions in the BRICS: Conditions for a Low Carbon Economic Development. Universite Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) Working Paper CEB 16-023.
[9] Azomahou, T., Laisney, F., and Van, P. N. 2005. Economic Development and CO2 Emissions: A Nonparametric Panel Approach. European Economic Research, 5(56): 1-35.
[10] Borhana, H., Ahmed, E. M., and Hitam, M. 2012. The Impact of CO2 on Economic Growth in ASEAN 8. Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences, 35: 389-397.
[11] Chandran, V. G., and Tang, C. F. 2013. The impacts of transport energy consumption, foreign direct investment and income on CO2 emissions in ASEAN-5 economies. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 24: 445-453.
[12] Danish, Baloch, M. A. 2017. Dynamic linkages between road transport energy consumption, economic growth, and environmental quality: evidence from Pakistan. Environmental Science and Pollution Research, 25: 7541–7552.
[13] Dietz, T., and Rosa, E.A. 1994. Rethinking the environmental impacts of population, affluence and technology. Human Ecology Review, 1: 277-300.
[14] Dogan, E., and Turkekul, B. 2016. CO2 emissions, real output, energy consumption, trade, urbanization, and financial development: testing the USA's EKC hypothesis. Environmental Science in Pollution Research, 23(2): 1203–1213.
[15] Ejuvbekpokpo, A. S. 2014. Impact of Carbon Emissions on Economic Growth in Nigeria. Asian Journal of Basic and Applied Sciences, 1(1): 15-25.
[16] Essien, A. V. 2012. The Relationship between Economic Growth and CO2 Emissions and the Effects of Energy Consumption on CO2 Emission Patterns in Nigerian Economy. Available at:
[17] Fan, F. and Lei, Y. 2017. Responsive Relationship between Energy-Related Carbon Dioxide Emissions from the Transportation Sector and Economic Growth in Beijing —Based on Decoupling Theory. International Journal of Sustainable Transportation, 11(10): 764-775.
[18] Garber, P. M. 2011. The Effect of Industrialization on the Environment. Cambridge: MIT Press.
[19] Granger, C.W.J. 1969. Investigating Causal Relations by Econometric models and Cross-Spectral Methods. Econometrica, 424-438.
[20] Gray, D., Anable, J., Illingworth, L. and Graham, W. 2006. Decoupling the link between economic growth, transport growth and carbon emissions in Scotland. Edinburgh: Scottish Government. Retrieved at:
[21] Grubb, M., Butler, L. and Feldman, O. 2007. Analysis of the Relationship between Growth in Carbon Dioxide Emissions and Growth in Income. Working Paper. Retrieved at:
[22] Joignaux, G., and Verny, J. 2004. Uncoupling between freight transport and economic growth: production organizations' locations and transport demand. Journal of Regional Urban Economics, 5: 779–792.
[23] Jong-Chao, Y., and Chih-Hsiang, L. 2016. Impact of population and economic growth on carbon emissions in Taiwan using an analytic tool STIRPAT. Sustainable Environment Research, 27(1): 41-48.
[24] Konur, D. and Schaefer, B. 2014. Integrated inventory control and transportation decisions under carbon emissions regulations: LTL vs TL carriers. Transportation Research Part E, 68: 14-38.
[25] Kulionis, V. 2013. The relationship between renewable energy consumption, CO2 emissions and economic growth in Denmark. LUND University, School of Economics and Management. Retrieved via:
[26] Léonardi, J. and Baumgartner, M. 2004. CO2 efficiency in road freight transportation: status quo, measures and potential. Transport. Resources. Part D, 9: 451–464.
[27] Liang, Y., Niu, D., Wang, H. and Li, Y. 2017. Factors Affecting Transportation Sector CO2 Emissions Growth in China: An LMDI Decomposition Analysis. Sustainability, 9(10): 1-20.
[28] Magazzino, C. 2014. A panel VAR approach of the relationship among economic growth, CO2 emissions, and energy use in the ASEAN-6 countries. International Journal of Energy Economics Policy, 4(4): 546–553.
[29] Makido, Y., Dhakal, S. and Yamagata, Y. 2012. Relationship between urban form and CO2 emissions: Evidence from fifty Japanese cities. Urban Climate, 2: 55-67.
[30] Mbarek, M. B. and Zghidi, N. 2017. Dynamic links between ICT, transport energy, environmental degradation and growth: empirical evidence from Tunisia. Environmental Economics, 8(3): 76-83.
[31] McKinnon, A.C. 2007. Decoupling of road freight transport and economic growth trends in the UK: an exploratory analysis. Transport Review, 27(1): 37–64.
[32] Meersman, H. and Van de Voorde, E. 2013. The relationship between economic activity and freight transport. In: Ben-Akiva, M., Meersman, H., Von de Voorde, E. (Eds.), Freight Transport Modelling. Emerald, Bingley, pp. 17–44.
[33] Mesagan, E. P. 2016. Economic Growth and Carbon Emission in Nigeria. Available at:
[34] Misra, K. 2017. The inter-relationship between economic growth and CO2 emissions in India. Journal of Finance and Economics, 102: 1-20.
[35] Mohiuddin, O., Asumadu-Sarkodie, S. and Obaidullah, M. 2016. The relationship between carbon dioxide emissions, energy consumption, and GDP: A recent evidence from Pakistan. Civil & Environmental Engineering, 3(1). DOI: 10.1080/23311916.2016.1210491.
[36] Mraihi, R. 2012. Transport intensity and energy efficiency: analysis of policy implications of coupling and decoupling. In: Moustafa Eissa (Ed.). Energy Efficiency – The Innovative Ways for Smart Energy, The Future Towards Modern Utilities. InTech. DOI:
[37] Muftau, O., Iyoboyi, M. and Ademola, A. A. 2014. An Empirical Analysis of the Relationship between CO2 Emission and Economic Growth in West Africa. American Journal of Economics, 4(1): 1-17.
[38] Neves, S. A., Marques, A. C. and Fuinhas, J. A. 2017. Is energy consumption in the transport sector hampering both economic growth and the reduction of CO2 emissions? A disaggregated energy consumption analysis. Transport Policy, 59: 64-70.
[39] Omri, A., Daly, S., Rault, C. and Chaibi, A. 2015. Financial development, environmental quality, trade and economic growth: What causes what in MENA countries. Energy Economics, 48: 242-252.
[40] Omri, A., Nguyen, D. K., and Rault, C. H. 2014. Causal interactions between CO2 emissions, FDI, and economic growth: evidence from dynamic simultaneous-equation models. Economic Modeling, 42: 382–389.
[41] Onokala, P. C. 2017. Transportation Development in Nigeria: The Journey So Far and the Way Forward. 97th inaugural lecture of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. Retrieved from:
[42] Otene, I. J., Murray, P. and Enongene, K. E. 2016. The Potential Reduction of Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Emissions from Gas Flaring in Nigeria’s Oil and Gas Industry through Alternative Productive Use. Proceedings of SBE16 Dubai, 17–19 January 2016, Dubai-UAE (Paper number: SBE16D135). (pp. 1-20).
[43] Palamalai, S., Ravindra, I. S. and Prakasam, K. 2015. Relationship between energy consumption, CO2 emissions, economic growth and trade in India. Journal of Economic & Financial Studies, 3(2): 1-17.
[44] Pesaran, M.H., Shin, Y. and Smith, R.J. 2001. Bounds Testing Approaches to the Analysis of Level Relationships. Journal of Applied Econometrics, 16: 289-326.
[45] Postorino, M. N., and Mantecchini, L. 2014. A transport carbon footprint methodology to assess airport carbon emissions. Journal of Air Transport Management, 37: 76-86.
[46] Putman, W. M., Ott, L., Darmenov, A. and daSilva, A. A. 2016. Global perspective of atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations. Parallel Computing, 55: 2-8.
[47] Říha, Z. and Honců, M. 2012. Transport Energy and Emissions and their Relation to Economic Output. Journal of Engineering Management and Competitiveness (JEMC), 2(2): 38-47.
[48] Saidi, S. and Hammami, S. 2017. Modelling the causal linkages between transport, economic growth and environmental degradation for 75 countries. Transportation Research Part D, 53: 415-427.
[49] Sanglimsuwan, K. S. 2011. Carbon Dioxide Emissions and Economic Growth: An Econometric Analysis. International Research Journal of Finance and Economics, 67: 97-102.
[50] Shahbaz, M., Loganathan, N., Zeshan, M. and Zaman, K. 2015. Does renewable energy consumption add to economic growth? An application of the auto-regressive distributed lag model in Pakistan. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 44: 576-585.
[51] Simulders, S. 2000. Economic Growth and Environmental Quality. Principles of environmental and Resources Economics”, Henk Folmer and Landis Gabel (eds), Edward Elgar.
[52] Stern, N. 2006. Responses to the Stern Review, Available at:
[53] Tanczos, K. and Torok, A. 2007. The linkage between climate change and energy consumption of Hungary in the road transportation sector. Transport, 22(2): 134–138.
[54] Timilsina, G. R., and Shrestha, A. 2008. The Growth of Transport Sector CO2 Emissions and Underlying Factors in Latin America and the Caribbean. The World Bank Development Research Group, Sustainable Rural and Urban Development Team, Working Paper 4734.
[55] Wang, Y., Xie, T. and Yang, S. 2016. Carbon emission and its decoupling research of transportation in Jiangsu Province. Journal of Cleaner Production, 142(2): 907-914.
[56] Xie, R., Fang, J. and Liu, C. 2017. The effects of transportation infrastructure on urban carbon emissions. Applied Energy, 196(15): 199-207.
[57] Zhu, H.M., You, W.H. and Zeng, Z.F. 2012. Urbanization and CO2 emissions: a semi-parametric panel data analysis. Economic Letter. 117(3): 848–850.
[58] AfDB (2010). Reducing Carbon Emissions from Transport Projects. African Development Bank Evaluation Study Reference No. EKB: REG 2010-16.
How to Cite
ADEKUNLE, Wasiu et al. Analysis of Environmental Degradation and Its Determinants in Nigeria: New Evidence from ARDL and Causality Approaches. Theoretical and Practical Research in the Economic Fields, [S.l.], v. 13, n. 1, p. 48 - 71, june 2022. ISSN 2068-7710. Available at: <>. Date accessed: 14 aug. 2022.