By John Ostapkovich

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – America’s energy future is in play in the Presidential race and one of Pennsylvania’s leading products is at the center of it.

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Pennsylvania has huge reserves of coal, much of it burned for electricity, and despite great progress in curtailing what the industry calls regulated pollutants, opponents see dire health effects.

Neurologist Alan Lockwood lays them out in The Silent Epidemic: Coal and the Hidden Threat to Health. Although he’d like to see it, the end of coal is not being debated.

“But you do hear the Democratic camp calling for a balanced menu of sources of energy as opposed to the Republicans, who are much more in favor of producing more coal energy,” says Dr. Lockwood.

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A video from the Pennsylvania Coal Alliance says, go with what works:

“Unleashing coal’s potential will finally put us on a path to energy security.”

The industry says coal is worth more than $2 billion a year to Pennsylvania’s economy.

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