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The relationship between carbon dioxide and agriculture in Ghana: a comparison of VECM and ARDL model

Asumadu-Sarkodie, Samuel
Owusu, Phebe Asantewaa
In this paper, the relationship between carbon dioxide and agriculture in Ghana was investigated by comparing a Vector Error Correction Model (VECM) and Autoregressive Distributed Lag (ARDL) Model. Ten study variables spanning from 1961 to 2012 were employed from the Food Agricultural Organization. Results from the study show that carbon dioxide emissions affect the percentage annual change of agricultural area, coarse grain production, cocoa bean production, fruit production, vegetable production, and the total livestock per hectare of the agricultural area. The vector error correction model and the autoregressive distributed lag model show evidence of a causal relationship between carbon dioxide emissions and agriculture; however, the relationship decreases periodically which may die over-time. All the endogenous variables except total primary vegetable production lead to carbon dioxide emissions, which may be due to poor agricultural practices to meet the growing food demand in Ghana. The autoregressive distributed lag bounds test shows evidence of a long-run equilibrium relationship between the percentage annual change of agricultural area, cocoa bean production, total livestock per hectare of agricultural area, total pulses production, total primary vegetable production, and carbon dioxide emissions. It is important to end hunger and ensure people have access to safe and nutritious food, especially the poor, orphans, pregnant women, and children under-5 years in order to reduce maternal and infant mortalities. Nevertheless, it is also important that the Government of Ghana institutes agricultural policies that focus on promoting a sustainable agriculture using environmental friendly agricultural practices. The study recommends an integration of climate change measures into Ghana's national strategies, policies and planning in order to strengthen the country's effort to achieving a sustainable environment.