Stochastic Environmental Research and Risk Assessment, 2023 (SCI-Expanded)
This study aims to demonstrate the impact of renewable energy consumption (REC) on environmental degradation using the EKC hypothesis testing for the BRIC and G-7 countries. Two EKC models were created and tested, with Model 2 including REC and other independent variables such as economic freedom (EF) and economic policy uncertainty (EPU), which affect the level of renewable energy consumption and CO2 emissions. Empirical findings indicate that the EKC hypothesis is verified faster in the REC-EF-EPU-based EKC model (Model 2) than in the EF-EPU-based EKC model (Model 1) for G-7 countries since the turning point takes place earlier in Model 2 than in Model 1 with REC. This suggests that renewable energy consumption accelerates the reduction of CO2 emissions. Moreover, this earlier turning point results in lower environmental cleaning costs, less time vesting, and saving resources and money for G-7 countries. However, the study found no evidence supporting the EKC hypothesis for the BRIC countries.