South Africa, like most developing nations, is confronted with choosing between the need to advance their economy and the need to protect the environment. The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN-SDGs-7, 11, 12 & 13) provide a strong foundation for this investigation. To this end, the current research investigates the combined impacts of economic policy uncertainty, fiscal decentralization, and green innovation on environmental sustainability for the instance of South Africa with yearly frequency data from 1960 to 2020. The current research leverages on dynamic ordinary least squares, fully modified ordinary least squares, and canonical cointegration regression. The Maki cointegration test shows how the variables being evaluated have an equilibrium connection across the time period under review. Empirical findings support the environmental Kuznets curve (EKC) framework. These findings imply that, in the first stages of economic expansion, ecological environment is being sacrificed for economic progress (scale stage). Based on the EKC hypothesis, long-term quadratic economic growth reduces emissions by 0.162% whereas a 1% rise in economic growth increases emissions by 0.791%. Similar to this, long-term economic globalization and economic policy uncertainty impair ecological sustainability, whereas long-term fiscal decentralization and green innovation raise it in South Africa. These results have broad environmental repercussions. The present investigation supported environmental stick measures and investment in initiatives on a fundamental change from fossil-fuel energy consumption base to renewables. The final portion highlights further insights.
Sustainable Development Goals
Udeagha, M. C., & Muchapondwa, E. (2022). Environmental sustainability in South Africa: Understanding the criticality of economic policy uncertainty, fiscal decentralization, and green innovation. Sustainable Development. Portico. https://doi.org/10.1002/sd.2473