CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Wyoming officials are moving ahead with new standards to help ensure that coal-mining companies are able to cover the cost of reclaiming any mines that close down.

The state Environmental Quality Council has approved new regulations that limit companies' ability to self-bond.

Wyoming Public Radio reports the measure is headed to Republican Gov. Mark Gordon to consider and possibly approve.

Self-bonding enables companies to rely on the strength of their balance sheets to assert they are able to cover all reclamation costs. Approved companies don't have to set aside bond money to cover those potential costs.

Wyoming's new regulations would factor in a company's credit rating in allowing a company to self-bond.

The issue has come up amid the recent bankruptcies of several companies that mine coal in Wyoming.

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