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William Pesek

The G-20 Doesn't Need a Growth Target

World leaders gathering for the G-20 summit in Brisbane should be focused on improving the quality, not the quantity of GDP growth.
World leaders should focus on quality, not quantity.

World leaders should focus on quality, not quantity.

Photographer: Daniel Munoz/Getty Images

Group of 20 host Tony Abbott went to great lengths to keep one topic -- climate change -- off the agenda at this weekend's confab in Brisbane. There's little mystery why: While the world hails China and the U.S. for moving forward on curbing carbon emissions, Australia is backsliding by scrapping a tax on carbon and resisting pressure to expand the use of renewables.

Abbott's justification? The need for growth. In fact, Australia's prime minister wants the rest of the G-20 also to pledge to grow by an additional 2 percent or more over five years.