THE Australian Conservation Foundation wants SA's politicians to honour a pledge to back a plan restoring the Murray's health.
As Federal Parliament begins sitting tomorrow for the final time before the Murray-Darling Basin Plan is tabled, the environmental group has warned the 23 MPs they are being watched and will be held accountable for their performances.
The pledge, signed in July 2011 by all SA's Liberal, Labor, Greens and independent federal MPs, was a vow to do everything in their power to ensure the plan "ends the overuse of water and returns enough flow to the Murray-Darling to restore its health".
ACF chief executive Don Henry has written to the MPs demanding they act on the pledge during this sitting of Parliament.
"It (the Murray-Darling Basin Authority's plan) remains an inadequate response to the overuse of water in the Basin ... " he says.
"This current basin plan will not flush out the two million tonnes of the basin's salt, keep the Murray Mouth open or revive dying wetlands."
The plan calls for a return of 2750 gigalitres to the Basin system - well below the 4000GL environmental scientists and the CSIRO say is needed.
Mr Henry called for water buy-backs to remain the Government's key focus because there was "clear evidence" the process worked for farmers, communities and the river and provided value for taxpayers' money.
While all the Federal MPs contacted by The Advertiser yesterday said they would make sure a river plan fair to SA was put on the party room agenda during the next two weeks, Mr Henry said it was time for action.
Opposition Basin spokesman Senator Birmingham said getting a fair and balanced Basin plan in place remained his top priority.
Greens Water spokeswoman Sarah Hanson-Young said it was now time for South Australian MPs from all sides of politics to demand a fair deal for the state.
In the next two weeks she will be meeting federal Water Minister Tony Burke and trying to organise an "emergency" river meeting between Opposition Leader Isobel Redmond and Premier Jay Weatherill.
The pledge signed by all 23* of South Australia's federal politicians in June 2011:
"Too much water has been taken out of the Murray-Darling for far too long. The chronic overuse of water has dangerously degraded South Australia's Coorong and Lower Lakes and many other internationally important wetlands, and made many countries suffer.
Strong leadership from Australia's political leaders can deliver a Murray-Darling Basin Plan that restores the environment, provides certainty for regional communities, and creates jobs. I pledge my support for a Murray-Darling Basin Plan that ends the overuse of water and returns enough flow to the Murray-Darling to restore its health.
*Mary Jo-Fisher has since resigned from her Senate position.
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