The current share of sub-Saharan Africa in global carbon dioxide emissions is negligible compared to major contributors like Asia, Americas, and Europe. This trend is, however, likely to change given that both economic growth and rate of urbanization in the region are projected to be robust in the future. The current study contributes to the literature by examining both the direct and the indirect impacts of quality of institution on the environment. Specifically, we investigate whether the institutional setting in the region provides some sort of a complementary role in the environment-FEG relationships. We use the panel two-step system generalized method of moments (GMM) technique to deal with the simultaneity problem. Data consists of 43 sub-Saharan African countries. The result shows that energy inefficiency compromises environmental standards. However, the quality of the institutional setting helps moderate this negative consequences; countries with good institutions show greater prospects than countries with poor institutions. On the other hand, globalization of the region and increased forest size generate positive environmental outcomes in the region. Their impacts are, however, independent of the quality of institution. Afforestation programs, promotion of other clean energy types, and investment in energy efficiency, basic city infrastructure, and regulatory and institutional structures, are desirable policies to pursue to safeguard the environment.
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