The aim of this work was to carry out a geochemical study of channel samples collected from six coal beds in the Marcelina Formation (Zulia State, western Venezuela) and to determine experimentally the gas content of the coals from the Paso Diablo mine. Organic geochemical analyses by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry and isotopic analyses on-line in coalbed gas samples were performed. The results suggest that the Guasare coals were deposited in a continental environment under highly dysoxic and low salinity conditions. The non-detection of 18??(H)-oleanane does not preclude that the organic facies that gave rise to the coals were dominated by angiosperms. In addition, the presence of the sesquiterpenoid cadalene may indicate the subordinate contribution of gymnosperms (conifers) in the Paleocene Guasare mire. The average coalbed gas content obtained was 0.6 cm3/g. ??13C and D values indicate that thermogenic gas is prevalent in the studied coals. Copyright ?? Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.