Greens Senator Bob Brown said that the legislation could have been better.

“It ought to have had better opportunities for regional and rural Australia,” Brown said.

“It ought not have been a further big handout to the big polluters but it will be.”

Meanwhile, Greens deputy leader Christine Milne said that the bill’s passing was a clear sign the government will be willing to weaken its emissions trading scheme to get it through the Senate.

“Go to the minister with amendments that brown down the scheme, that shore up the Labor vote in their coal electorates, and they go ‘yes’,” Milne said.

“Take amendments to the minister that actually drive the expansion of renewable energy and the zero-carbon future and it’s all too hard and it can’t be done.”

Assistant Climate Change Minister Greg Combet said that the Coalition must now pass the emissions trading scheme.

“It is critical to have the CPRS legislation passed through this Parliament and it is critical for the Coalition to stand up in the national interest,” Combet said.