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Boring Food and Lots of Water on Day Two of Living Below the Line

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I am realising that I did not plan this very well. I think I should have enough food to get me through the week as long as I top it up with my remaining 51p, but I definitely do not have enough variety or fruit and vegetables.

I do not usually eat many carbohydrates; my diet is usually rich with protein and fresh vegetables and salad. I would not usually eat four eggs in two days! But carbohydrates are cheap and filling so they have made up the most of my shopping basket. I can certainly tell already that my diet has changed and feel bloated after eating and very hungry between meals.

Today I had two boiled eggs for breakfast, last night's rice dish for lunch and some instant chicken noodles and an egg for dinner. I have also had about six cups of tea, with tiny bits of milk to make it last the week.

When I have been hungry I have been filling up on water, straight from the tap, I've drunk at least two litres today. But this would not be an easy option for the millions of people living in water poverty, where women and children spend hours every day walking miles to collect clean water. The lack of clean water close to people's homes affects their time, livelihoods and quality of life.

According to End Water Poverty 884 million people lack access to clean water and poor sanitation affects 2.6 billion people worldwide. These two problems combine to undermine health, education and economic and gender equality progress in developing countries.

Climate change is only making global water poverty worse, world leaders must keep working towards meeting the Millennium Development Goals. Ensuring access to clean and safe water and sanitation are central to achieving these ambitious targets

It is true to say that it is the most vulnerable in every corner of the world that climate change hits the hardest. The Joseph Rowntree Foundation released a report in February 2011 that stated that water poverty will even start to become a real issue in the UK, as scarcity of supply, caused by climate change, pushes up bills. They estimate that already four million households in the UK are suffering water poverty which is set to rise as bills increase by up to 5% for some customers.

More action must be taken on climate change, the UK must show real leadership in order to protect the world's poorest. David Cameron claimed that this would be the "greenest government ever", his pledge is just another broken promise to add to the long list.

At Conservative party conference 2011, George Osborne even wrongly blamed green taxes for soaring energy costs and seemed to signal backing away from UK climate change leadership.

Trade unions are continuing to argue for sustainable, green growth as a key plank of the UK's economic recovery and are dismayed at the current direction of travel. The 2012 budget saw the idea of a green economy go up in smoke as the oil and gas industries received tax breaks with no new support for renewables offered. Not showing the leadership we need in the UK and certainly not showing leadership on the world stage, evidently people and planet are not coming before profit for this government. The Queen's speech announced the launch of a Green Investment Bank to provide investment in green industries.

But it is not expected to have powers to borrow until at least 2015, and it will be dependent on how much the government's debt has been reduced, which given the rest of their failing economic policies is not exactly very certain. A bold and ambitious approach to energy and green jobs and growth is needed to not only for our economy today, but for the future of our planet and it's most vulnerable people.

So, as I moan about my very uninspiring meals, I remind myself I am lucky enough to be able to drink from my tap, take a hot bath and have access to sanitation and the dignity that that provides.

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Live Below the Line Day 1: Eating healthy on a $1.50 a day

Live Below the Line: Meeting the challenge to live on $1.50 a day

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