It needs to be understood that compared to the thermal energy, hydel is a much cheaper and almost inexhaustible source of energy. Vast, untapped hydropower potential is sitting idle in our high mountains waiting to be exploited. Coal is also a cheap option but I wish to clarify that the general concept about Pakistan having the largest coal deposits in the world is incorrect. We should be realistic. According to the world ranking of proven coal reserves, Pakistan has a medium quality, sub-bituminous, lignite coal (having 33.4 percent Carbon, 32 percent water and 5.2 percent Sulphur) which ranks 19th in the world. It is only a dismal 0.3 percent of the world's total proven coal reserves. The US (27.1 percent), followed by Russia (17.3 percent), China (12.5 percent) and India (12.2 percent), are the leaders in having coal deposits. China leads the world in terms of coal-fired power generation. It also needs to be clarified also that power generation using hydro-electric sources available in Pakistan costs, (all inclusive) Rs 0.195/KWh (2001 figures). In comparison, thermal power generation using Lakhra coal in Sindh has been calculated at Rs 5.0/KWh. Thar coal deposits are much better in quality and larger in quantity than Lakhra deposits. Power generation based upon Thar coal is about Rs 4.20/KWh. We have a unique blend of rivers, glaciers and mountain passing through the 'Roof of the World'. The combination provides a very large potential of power generation. It is possible to harness the energy simply by routing the rivers and streams through a 'cascade of water storage reservoirs', producing very cheap electricity which can meet our rising power demands for ages. The vast magnitude of our available potential can be appreciated from the fact that a single storage reservoir at Katzara (Skardu Dam) can store 35 MAF of water. According to estimates, that could be used to generate up to 40,000 MW of electricity which is way more than the power generation capacity of even the Three Gorges Dam of China (18,200 MW, 18.0 MAF) which was completed this year at the cost of about $25 billion. It is important to realise that, our enemies are bent upon halting our progress by using all underhand means to thwart us. President Musharraf had inaugurated work on Bhasha Dam in 2006 but the German consultants engaged for the project by the government of Pakistan was black-listed by the World Bank on very spurious charges. The entire work was, therefore, stopped, as the funds committed by the World Bank were not released. Now, we have completely forgotten the whole project in the wake of the gruelingly law and order situation created by terrorism in Swat area. Imagine the lop-sidedness of the debate about hydel and thermal generation. Apart from being almost 25 times more costly, thermal power now has a highly critical hurdle to surmount. That is, the additional task of complying with the targets identified in the international protocol to reduce greenhouse gas emissions levels, a highly cost-intensive requirement. Hydroelectric power is completely green and free from all such encumbrances. Finally, a gross misconception about Punjab 'misappropriating' storage water share of other provinces needs to be cleared. Natural water cycle has its rules. Water must flow from land to sea and return in precipitation. All water used on land, less the consumptive use plus evaporation from water surfaces, totaling a maximum of 8 percent, must find its way to the sea through river recharge and drainage. Therefore, if flow in rivers is reduced, even without storage, it must have reasons other than 'pilferage'. We know the impact of global warming with its exceedingly grave implications on our water cycle. Therefore, instead of making baseless insinuations, we must wake up and jointly tackle the horrible problem of the fast depleting water resources due to the global warming.