This study examines the impact of natural resource extraction, population, affluence, and trade openness on carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and energy consumption in 17 sub-Saharan African (SSA) countries from 1971 to 2019, using the stochastic impacts on population, affluence, and technology (STIRPAT) model. The Westerlund and Kao cointegration tests were employed to determine long-run relationships among the variables. Pooled mean group autoregressive distributed lag (PMG-ARDL), panel fully modified ordinary least squares (FMOLS), and dimension group-mean panel dynamic ordinary least squares (DOLS) techniques were used to assess long-run multipliers. The findings of the study reveal that natural resource extraction, population, and income have a significant positive impact on energy consumption and CO2 emissions over an extended period in SSA countries. Findings suggest that an increase of 1% in income (affluence), natural resource extraction, and population, in the long run, will result in a rise of carbon emissions by 0.06% to 0.90% and an increase of 0.05% to 0.36% in energy consumption in the sampled SSA countries. Conversely, trade openness demonstrates a negative effect on energy consumption and CO2 emissions. This finding suggests that an increment of trade openness by 1% will lead to a reduction of 0.10% to 0.27% in the emission of carbon and a decrease of 0.05% to 0.09% in energy consumption over a long period. The study recommends that policymakers enforce stringent ecofriendly regulations, promote the adoption of green technologies and energy-saving sources, and reduce tariffs on ecofriendly commodities to enhance sustainable development in the region.