MAYES COUNTY, Oklahoma - The Grand River Dam Authority has renamed its power facility near Chouteau.  Formerly known as the GRDA Coal-Fired Complex, the facility will now be called the Grand River Energy Center.

In a news release, the GRDA says the current power plant home to its coal-fired generation plant will be expanded by 2017 with a new natural gas-fired generation facility.

"We felt the new name would better reflect both the importance of this site and its expanded mission," said GRDA Chief Executive Officer Dan Sullivan.

Sullivan says the new power unit will produce electricity in two ways: natural gas is first used to fuel a combustion turbine-generator, and then heat from that process will be recaptured and used to produce steam to turn another steam turbine-generator.

"Part of the GRDA Board's strategy has been to reduce our reliance on coal," said Sullivan.

"We can achieve some of that with this new facility. By burning natural gas from right here in Oklahoma, we will have a diversified generation portfolio that will continue to keep costs low for our customers."

The 1,275 acre Grand River Energy Center is located on the south edge of the MidAmerica Industrial Park in Mayes County.