Environmental Degradation, ICT and Inclusive Development in Sub-Saharan Africa

Energy Policy, 111(December), pp. 353–361 (2017)

24 Pages Posted: 3 Oct 2017 Last revised: 28 Oct 2017

See all articles by Simplice Asongu

Simplice Asongu

African Governance and Development Institute

Sara le Roux

Oxford Brookes University - Department of Economics

Nicholas Biekpe

University of Cape Town (UCT)

Date Written: January 1, 2017

Abstract

This study examines how information and communication technology (ICT) complements carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions to influence inclusive human development in forty-four Sub-Saharan African countries for the period 2000-2012. ICT is measured with internet penetration and mobile phone penetration. The empirical evidence is based on Generalised Method of Moments. The findings broadly show that ICT can be employed to dampen the potentially negative effect of environmental pollution on human development.

We establish that:

(i) ICT complements CO2 emissions from liquid fuel consumption to increase inclusive development;

(ii) ICT interacts with CO2 intensity to negatively affect inclusive human development and,

(iii) the net effect on inclusive human development is positive from the complementarity between mobile phones and CO2 emissions per capita.

Conversely, we also establish evidence of net negative effects. Fortunately, the corresponding ICT thresholds at which these net negative effects can be completely dampened are within policy range, notably: 50 (per 100 people) mobile phone penetration for CO2 emissions from liquid fuel consumption and CO2 intensity. Theoretical and policy implications are discussed.

Keywords: CO2 emissions; ICT; Economic development; Africa

JEL Classification: C52; O38; O40; O55; P37

Suggested Citation

Asongu, Simplice and le Roux, Sara and Biekpe, Nicholas, Environmental Degradation, ICT and Inclusive Development in Sub-Saharan Africa (January 1, 2017). Energy Policy, 111(December), pp. 353–361 (2017). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3047015 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3047015

Simplice Asongu (Contact Author)

African Governance and Development Institute ( email )

P.O. Box 8413
Yaoundé, 8413
Cameroon

Sara Le Roux

Oxford Brookes University - Department of Economics ( email )

Oxford Brookes Business School
Headington Campus
Oxford, OX3 0BP
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://saraleroux.weebly.com/

Nicholas Biekpe

University of Cape Town (UCT) ( email )

Private Bag X3
Rondebosch, Western Cape 7701
South Africa

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