As if an imminent economic collapse, not being able to withdraw money from banks, and a stagnant political crisis weren't enough, the Lebanese are now suffering the effects of severe power cuts.
Citizens across the country reported a significant electricity shortage affecting their areas this week. Some people in Beirut said there were only 24 minutes of state-provided power on Wednesday.
State-run Electricité du Liban (EDL) confirmed the outages in a statement published on Tuesday, explaining they would continue to reduce hours of electricity "if there is no increase to the state subsidies it currently receives." Precautions will be taken by the company to try and maintain "the greatest stability" of its electricity network.
The shaken country will experience another 48 hours of severe power shortages, caretaker Energy Minister Nada Boustani said Thursday, reassuring local residents that "the power should be back to normal starting Saturday."
Some attributed the latest electricity crisis to a shortfall in diesel and fuel supplies directly caused by dollar shortages being experienced in Lebanon.
However, Boustani refuted these claims during a call-in aired on Al Jadeed TV on Thursday. The official stressed that both diesel fuel and gasoline are available, adding that sufficient liters were distributed to providers and are enough to generate electricity. She revealed that the ministry has enough fuel to last until the end of February, explaining that EDL wasn't able to open credit lines for different reasons.
The energy minister claimed electricity will be provided between 16 and 21 hours per day in Beirut and between 8 to 10 hours in other areas until the end of February. That remains to be seen as analysts believe things are set to become more complicated in the next few weeks.
This is because beyond February, EDL will need credit lines included in the 2020 draft budget - which has not yet been passed by parliament - in order to guarantee power generation for the rest of the year.
The Lebanese are venting their frustration online
The electricity crisis adds to the suffering of people who have been fighting for their right to a better life since a revolution launched in the country on Oct. 17.
Thousands have now turned to trending Twitter hashtags to express their utter outrage at the power outages.
A day in our lives nowadays
Lebanese selfies be like
Some are trying to focus on the positive
"I used to study using candle light, my son."
Schools in Lebanon today
Many are figuring out solutions
"Glad my scented candles came to some good use"
But what do those who have no other option do?
"Just remember that many people can't afford generator fees and only rely on electricity provided by the state for everything. So in the middle of this blackout, there are people as old as my grandma and yours showering in freezing water and living on candlelight and there are still people making excuses."
Others are reviewing where it all went wrong
Meanwhile, politicians are still in lalaland
"Every person whose electricity is gone should put up a photo of their leader... they'll light up your home"
EDL can't produce needed electricity due to lack of funds, so people continue to protest
People have been targeting branches of EDL and other power infrastructures in northern Lebanon over the past 24 hours, protesting the drastic increase in electricity outages.
An EDL source spoke to Beirut Today, saying the outages were "primarily due to a lack of funding EDL had available to buy fuel." Under these circumstances, the institution was unable to put more than 1,500 megawatts of power online when the demand exceeds 3,300MW.
The stormy weather in the country hasn't helped either as it caused damage to power infrastructure and prevented fuel barges from docking and unloading their cargo, the source added.
It is expected that things will get better in the next two days, though not for long. According to the source, this is because the level of funds given to EDL is not enough to cover needs. "We are trying to deal with this situation to try and provide electricity for the longest period possible, which forces us to take these measures. Sadly this is the situation in the country," the source added.