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Climate and prosperity are global chicken and egg

Australian Greens Leader Christine Milne says Joe Hockey can't expect to grow Australia's economy with policies that deepen inequality and worsen global warming.

"Climate has stolen the show at the G20, in spite of the Abbott government," said Senator Milne.

"Joe Hockey and Tony Abbott are completely wedged between their big business mates who want to carry on polluting for profit, and the world leaders who've come to Australia declaring it's time for a massive shift.

"Around the talks before they came back to Australia, journalists were referring to our Prime Minister as the great blunder from down under, and frankly, what else are they going to think?

"Even today Joe Hockey has been out emphatically declaring he does not believe climate change is going to impact on economic growth. They are living in a parallel universe.

"What other world leaders have clearly done at the G20 is tie climate to prosperity. They know you need a healthy climate to have healthy people to drive a prosperous economy.

"There's no point in growing the economy in a way that harms the climate, people and long term prosperity," said Senator Milne.

"Joe Hockey keeps saying we need to fix the budget before dealing with global warming, but he's given himself an impossible task. What he needs to do is decouple economic growth from fossil fuels and environmental degradation.

"If Joe Hockey wants to create jobs to lift people out of poverty, he's got to do it in an ecologically and socially sustainable way. He's got to do it within a low-carbon framework or his efforts will do more harm than good."

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