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Aruba, February 1, 2012 - Colombia is developing its geothermal energy project with Ecuador, said the country's Mines and Energy Minister Tuesday. Mauricio Cardenas announced on his Twitter page that $4 million would be invested in initial studies of three volcanoes on the Colombian-Ecuadorean border.

The Ministry of Mining and Energy would release a report soon with information about the project, said Cardenas, which aimed to provide "clean, renewable energy." The three volcanoes are Chiles, Cerro Negro, and Tufiño. The project will be carried out by Colombian energy producer ISAGEN, with the first phase set to be finished by December 2013. The announcement followed a meeting between Cardenas and Ecuador's Minister of Electricity and Renewable Energy, Esteban Albornoz. The agreement was initially signed by Colombia and Ecuador, ISAGEN, and CELEC, the Ecuador electricity corporation in July 2010.

Geothermal energy is produced by using the volcano to heat water or another liquid, creating steam which rotates turbines.

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