The nexus between environment-economic development has been investigated for a long time. Many empiricalstudies have measured environmental degradation by CO2emissions and ignored the possibility that the use ofsuch metric as environmental degradation indicator may be invalid in some cases when it comes to resourcestocks. This paper focuses on two indicators of environmental degradation including ecological footprint (EF)and CO2emissions as target variables to provide new insights into the ongoing discussions of whether theenvironmental Kuznets Curve (EKC) hypothesis is related to the indicators of environmental pressure used.Estimating a heterogeneous panel model with data on 14 European countries over the period 1990–2014, weprovide evidence for the sensitivity of the EKC hypothesis to the type of environmental degradation proxy used.Furthermore, we provide new insights regarding the relevance of EF as an appropriate environmental tool thatfits the EKC prediction in contrast to CO2emissions. Regarding the explanatory variables, the results show thatrenewable energy is an environmentally friendly source while fossil fuels contribute to environmental de-gradation. The inclusion of renewable energy and fossil fuel does not alter the behavior of economic growth inall environmental degradation indicators. The empirical results demonstrate the need to implement environ-mental management policies that encourage the production/supply of renewable energy and to reduce relianceon fossil fuel consumption. This paper is expected to provide policy makers with a set of policy proposals toachieve sustainable environmental and economic development.