The current energy crisis has pushed the country into a quagmire, which is deepening and widening rapidly. Given the current worsening scenario, therefore, a comprehensive and effective strategy underpinned by strong political will, urgency and rationality is needed so as to address the underlying causes of the problem. In order to address the root causes, one needs to look at three primary levels: production; distribution; and transmission. After having diagnosed at all the three given levels, one is provided with a good deal of lacunae that needs to be fixed at all the three levels. The problems are scrutinized as follow: Firstly, at the level of production there are two fundamental problems that are inextricably linked with each other. The first one is the problem regarding dependence on thermal sources. As a matter of fact, thermal sources occupy 64.12 per cent share of the total energy-mix. This, in turn, causes an increase in tariffs. In the case of not increasing the tariff, the circular debt increases and opens a Pandora's Box. The circular debt has reached to the tune of Rs. 450 billion, thus, creating a plethora of financial problems for the energy sector. Therefore, this problem deserves urgent attention, without which the problem cannot be done away with. Second, the hydel resources are not being exploited as they ought to be. Secondly, the problems that lie at the level of distribution and transmission together are formidable. As a matter of fact, the problems of distribution and transmission losses including electricity theft have done incalculable harm to the body-politic perpetually. According to an estimate, the distribution and transmission losses amount to over 23 percent at the country level. Given the level of losses, the countrywide financial implications are estimated be over Rs. 225 billion. Moreover, careful estimates suggest that by curtailing theft alone over Rs. 100 billion can be saved annually. Besides, renovation of infrastructure can bring an additional Rs. 50 billion of saving annually. Also, by controlling these losses around three million new connections can be provided. Therefore, resolving the problem at this level will provide the body-politic with financial capacity to build new hydel plants and revamp the old ones. Finally, the renewable resources have their own importance. A deal has been finalized with the US which should be encouraged. Pakistan possess above 185 billion tones of coal. These must be exploited to the fullest. Besides, so as to address the problem on temporary basis, a comprehensive and all-encompassing energy conservation strategy ought to be crafted and strictly implemented. In sum, the hydra-headed problem must be dealt with urgently and efficiently. The multidimensional problem can only be handled by applying a multidimensional strategy. If the problem is not addressed urgently, the repercussions would be unexpected and unprecedented. SYED GOHAR ALTAF, Islamabad, October 12.