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US coal mining industry faces gloomy future

As ageing coal-fired power plants are shut, coal's share of the nation's power mix has plummeted from nearly half in 2008 to roughly a third today.

Bobtown, Pennsylvania

WHEN Nic Zmija applied for a job at the 4 West coal mine three years ago, he was tantalised by a fat raise and a secure future. Once hired, he was told that someday even his two young sons had jobs waiting for them.

"It all sounded good," Mr Zmija recalled

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