Although sustainability-related efforts remain central to development, their accomplishment varies across places for a variety of reasons including climatic and geographic differences. This variability makes a regional focus important. In this paper, we investigate ecological footprints in both total and sub-footprint forms as measures of environmental sustainability over time in Africa. We examine economic, demographic, and ecological variables as key factors driving national-level environmental sustainability in Africa over nearly five decades. Our results reveal demographic attributes to be the primary but not the only forces affecting environmental sustainability. We situate our findings both in the context of prior studies and in relation to opportunities for further academic study.