Governor Matt Mead is hoping a partnership with Japan will help "find some much needed solutions" for Wyoming's struggling coal industry.

Mead and the Japan Coal Energy Center (JCOAL) signed a memorandum of understanding Monday to work together on making advancements in coal.

"Not only do we want to be a leader in the production of coal, we want to be a leader in the solutions for coal here in Wyoming," said Mead.

"Just storing it, putting it away, is not going to be economical," Mead added.  "We have to figure out how we can use coal in different ways and in the most efficient and cleanest way."

Mead says the agreement will allow the University of Wyoming, Wyoming Business Council, Wyoming Infrastructure Authority and other state agencies to collaborate with JCOAL and the 120 companies they represent.

"Those companies, likewise, are interested in these solutions," said Mead.  "Hopefully we'll have an opportunity to move the ball even further in terms of what we're doing with coal."

"It's not a solution that will happen next year, but it's a solution that will happen," added Mead.

Joy Greenwald, Townsquare Media