PITTSBURGH, Sept. 24, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Boilermakers Local 154 Business Manager Raymond C. Ventrone and Pennsylvania Coal Alliance CEO John Pippy today announced the formation of Energy United, representing pro-coal leaders and citizens in Western Pennsylvania and committed to educating Western Pennsylvania residents about the importance of coal to the local economy. "We don't need to choose between a clean environment and affordable, reliable electricity and the jobs and economic benefits that go along with that," said John Pippy, CEO of the Pennsylvania Coal Alliance. "With a collaborative approach, we can have all of those things. And if labor and business can find common ground on an issue, surely the federal government and energy stakeholders can do the same." "Let's be clear, I'm a Democrat, union leader, but I put my member's interests ahead of politics. The working class is bearing the brunt of the policies advocated by the anti-energy crowd. These so-called "environmental" organizations and their allies at the EPA are indifferent to the effects of their policies on hard-working Americans like my 2000 members and our other union brothers and sisters in this region and beyond." Ventrone continued, "I've witnessed the environmental progress our region has enjoyed over the last 40 years. I know we can have jobs and protect the environment at the same time. Let's not relegate coal energy, our ace in the hole versus the rest of the world, to the bench simply for ideological reasons. The energy debate has been hijacked by an extreme, vocal minority and it's time for the silent majority to stand up and fight back." Energy United supports a national energy policy that takes advantage of America's abundant domestic supply of coal and helps generate affordable, reliable electricity, while continuing the environmental progress made in Pennsylvania and across the country in recent decades.