Published on August 2023 | Development Economics
The latest surge of global uncertainty and disruptions in global supply networks put policymakers under pressure to emprise green innovations as a vital tool to address environmental concerns. However, producing green innovations doesn't always help in achieving environment-related sustainable development goals. Therefore, in this study, we endeavour to investigate to what extent green innovations are efficient in improving environmental efficiency. To this end, a network bias-corrected data envelopment analysis and clustering analysis is applied. The data used in this study covers 42 countries from different regions, spanning from 2000 to 2020. The results reveal that most countries have not made major advancements in environmental efficiency signifying the low level of green innovations utilization to achieve environment-related sustainable development goals (SDGs). Additionally, the results demonstrate a U efficiency curve for inputs-oriented green innovations efficiency over time, indicating that the initial stages of green innovations production are associated with a decreased return. However, over time, the efficiency exhibits an upward trend. The benchmarking analysis reveals that South American and European Union nations set the bar for other countries in terms of efficiently leveraging green innovations to achieve SDGs. Our findings also suggest that environmental efficiency is more dependent on green-supporting policies such as green energy production and green taxes. As a result, we conclude that achieving environmental SDGs while utilizing green innovations does not always result in the development of other SDGs. Therefore, policymakers need to prioritize pursuing a green developmental approach and supporting policies to achieve environment-related SDGs and other SDGs.