The Chinese government has made many energy policies on coal, and coalmine methane (CMM) use. However, not all of these policies have effects or positive impacts. For example, it has been quite a few years since the national government made policies to encourage coalmine methane power to be sold to the grid. Practice showed that not any kilowatt of electricity was sold from a coalmine methane power plant to the grid in Sichuan and Guizhou Provinces as of December 2008. The objectives of this paper are to review and evaluate the Chinese government energy and climate policies that are related to coal and coalmine methane, analyze relevant policy barriers, and make recommendations to overcome these barriers and avoid policy failures. This paper provides the literature review, challenges, resources, policies and other updated information on China's CMM recovery and utilization. The paper concludes that China needs to further reform its energy and environment management system, engage provincial governments in CMM capture and use activities, and provide incentives to qualified engineers and skilled workers to work in remote coal mining areas. This paper transfers key messages to policy makers for them to make better CMM capture and use policies. (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.