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Energy-aware routing is an effective way to extend the operational lifetime of wireless ad hoc networks. In this paper, we propose a new energy-aware routing scheme called Reliable Minimum Energy Cost Routing (RMECR). RMECR finds routes which require least amount of energy for reliable packet transfer in ad hoc networks. It defines the energy cost of packet forwarding by a node as the fraction of remaining battery energy which is consumed by a node to forward a packet. This includes the energy consumed for retransmission of the packet as well, when the packet or its acknowledgment is lost. We show that RMECR can effectively reduce the energy consumption of nodes and balance the traffic load among them. Furthermore, RMECR is able to find reliable routes, in which constituent links require less number of packet retransmissions due to packet loss. This in turn decreases the latency of packet delivery and saves energy as well.