A new coalition has called for action to jointly target the triple problems of the credit crunch, rising oil prices and climate change.
The Green New Deal Group, made up of finance, energy and environment experts, warns that if action is not taken to stabilise greenhouse gas emissions then the world will reach a 'point of no return' in 100 months time.
It wants to see massive investment in renewable energy and wider environmental transformation in the UK.
This would in turn, the group claims, create thousands of new green collar jobs.
The Green New Deal group also wants "reckless aspects" of the finance sector to be reigned in and for a new alliance between environmentalists, industry, agriculture, and unions to put the interests of the real economy first.
It has challenged the government to create a comprehensive legislative programme equivalent to that implemented by former US president Franklin Roosevelt 75 years ago - a 'Green New Deal'.
"The credit, climate and oil crunches are all individually serious issues, but in combination their impact could be catastrophic for our economy and for our way of life," said Tony Juniper, former director of Friends of the Earth.
"We need real leadership and vision to get through this, and right now we are not seeing it.
"Politicians from across the spectrum should signal their willingness to think differently and to embrace new ideas. I hope they will see the Green New Deal as an approach fit for the times we are in."