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The relationship between climate change and political instability: the case of MENA countries (1985:01–2016:12)


The aim of this study is to examine the relationship between climate change and political instability in the MENA region. To this extent, 18 Middle East and North African (MENA) countries are analyzed covering the period 1985:01–2016:12 with monthly data. In econometric analysis, at first cross-sectional dependency analysis is applied, and existence of cross-sectional dependency among countries is found. Therefore, CADF-second generation panel unit root test applied, and finally, Dumitrescu and Hurlin (2012) panel causality test that consider the cross-sectional dependency are utilized. For empirical analysis, temperature and precipitation data representing climate change, political instability, and conflict data are employed. According to the findings, there is a causal relationship from climate change to political instability in 16 countries and to conflict in 15 countries. In addition to this, at least one causal relationship is determined from climate change to political instability or conflict in all MENA countries. Therefore, empirical results support the assumption that climate change acts as a threat multiplier in MENA countries since it triggers, accelerates, and deepens the current instabilities.

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Correspondence to Emrah Sofuoğlu.

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This study was created by revising the Ph.D. thesis titled “The Relationship Between Climate Change and Political Instability: The Case of MENA Countries (1985:01–2016:12)” under the supervision of Prof.Dr. Ahmet AY.

Responsible Editor: Muhammad Shahbaz

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Sofuoğlu, E., Ay, A. The relationship between climate change and political instability: the case of MENA countries (1985:01–2016:12). Environ Sci Pollut Res (2020).

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  • Climate change
  • Political instability
  • Environmental economics
  • Panel causality
  • MENA
  • Conflict