Economic Growth, Energy, and Environmental Kuznets Curve 

The aim of this study is to investigate the relationship between income and Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emissions in the context of the Environmental Kuznets Curve (EKC), which posits the existence of an inverted U-shape relationship between environmental degradation and economic development. For this purpose, two empirical models are examined. For both models, the relationship between per capita income and per capita CO2 emissions and the relationship among per capita income, per capita energy use, and per capita CO2 emissions are analyzed respectively between 1980 and 2010, using the panel data estimation techniques with the application of Driscoll-Kraay Standard Errors. Yet, for the first model, data are analyzed for 26 high-income OECD countries, while for the second model, data are examined for 52 emerging countries. The results of both models reveal that N-shape and an inverted N-shape relationship for cubic functional form are observed. Thus, the results of the study challenge the EKC hypothesis, which implies that environmental degradation cannot be automatically resolved by economic growth. This paper originates from the master’s thesis of Selin Özokcu, supervised by Prof. Özlem Özdemir.

Short Bio

Selin Özokcu is an interdisciplinary policy professional with a strong interest in global transitions, particularly in the context of climate change and sustainable development. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the Middle East Technical University (METU). Continuing her academic journey, Özokcu earned both an MSc and a PhD (awarded in 2021) in Earth System Science, specializing in Energy, Environmental Economics, and Policy, also at METU. For both her master’s and PhD studies, Selin is the recipient of scholarships given under the National Scholarship Program for MSc and PhD Students by The Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TÜBİTAK). Özokcu’s research expertise encompasses a wide array of critical areas, including climate policy, sustainable development, green sectoral transformation, sustainable consumption practices, and food studies. operations. Currently, she serves as a specialist at the Technology Development Foundation of Turkey.


Middle East Technical University
Department of Industrial Engineering Seminar

Friday, March 15, 2024, 4:00 pm (on Teams)

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