Economic Growth, Energy Mix, and Tourism-Induced EKC Hypothesis: Evidence from Top Ten Tourist Destinations

by Md. Hasanur Rahman , Liton Chandra Voumik, Md. Jamsedul Islam, Md. Abdul Halim and Miguel Angel Esquivias 

Sustainability 202214(24), 16328;

Abstract: The tourism sector makes a sizable contribution to a country’s gross domestic product,
increasing employment opportunities, foreign currency earnings, and economic diversification
strategies. This paper uses the Environmental Kuznets Curve (EKC) model to analyze the effects
of tourism on the environment in the world’s top 10 tourist countries from 1972 to 2021. Panel
cointegration and second-generation unit root tests are suggested due to the presence of crosssectional dependence and slope heterogeneity. A cross-sectional-autoregressive-distributed lag
(CS-ARDL) model is applied to evaluate the marginal influence of environmental variables other
than tourism on carbon dioxide (CO
2) emissions. These variables include fossil fuels, renewable
energy, and nuclear energy. For the purpose of testing robustness, both the augmented mean group
(AMG) and the common correlated effects mean group (CCEMG) estimators are employed. The
CS-ARDL supports the EKC hypothesis in the short run and long run, but it is not significant in the
short run. The existence of EKC demonstrates that rising income leads to fewer CO
2 emissions. All
forms of environmental degradation can be accelerated by using fossil fuels. The results of this study
indicate that CO
2 emissions can be reduced by using renewable energy and nuclear energy. A rise
in tourism activity has a positive impact on environmental quality. The best-attended tourist spots
around the globe are those that, in the long run, implement clean energy-related technology and
promote ecotourism.