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SunBug Solar Celebrates the Milestone of Serving 2000 Customers

WESTFIELD, Mass. -- SunBug Solar, a Massachusetts solar energy provider with offices in Westfield and Arlington Mass., is pleased to announce the installation of its 2,000th customer. John Hoogstraten and Eileen Keegan, a couple residing in Williamsburg, Mass., are SunBug's 2,000th clients, having gone solar not once, but twice.

Hoogstraten,​ a semi-retired contractor, was skeptical at first when first introduced to photovoltaic (PV) solar through the Solarize Mass program in 2014. The program, run by the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, helps municipalities design, promote, and execute limited- time group programs that educate residents on the benefits of green energy while offering them discounts on installations. Keegan encouraged her husband to overcome that initial skepticism and look into the matter further.

"I figured there was no harm in learning more, so I went to one of their information sessions," said Hoogstraten. "I signed up for a site assessment and we ran the numbers."

When John and Eileen realized that the system would pay for itself in about seven years, they began the process to have his first solar energy system installed. They chose to invest in a plan that would deliver just enough energy to meet their home's consumption.

The system proved profitable for the energy needs of their home, but only when supplemented with the firewood John chops himself. Because John and Eileen plan to age-in-place, and are looking toward a time when chopping wood is no longer feasible nor desirable. Their plan to add air source heat pumps (ASHPs) for heating meant their electric load would increase, and wanted to add additional PV so as to avoid as much fossil fuel use as possible.

Again, through MassCEC they learned about the Solar Access Program, an effort to help homeowners install ASHPs in conjunction with solar. While they did not initially qualify, Dan Britton, a member of the residential solar design team at SunBug's Westfield location encouraged them to not give up. They might qualify in the next calendar year.

"They mentioned they were entering semi-retirement and expected their 2019 income might qualify, so I suggested they can re-apply after they file their 2019 taxes," said Britton.

By March of this year, John and Eileen confirmed their eligibility and the conversation with SunBug continued.

In the end, they opted for an additional 2.5 kW of roof mounted solar and a Tesla Powerwall battery for backup for when the grid goes down. SunBug system designer Dan Britton said it was a clear choice. "We decided to add a battery backup because all of the stars were in alignment: they have a dry, clean basement with space for a battery adjacent to their electric panel, they can include the battery system in the Mass Solar Loan to get additional income-based loan support, they can take advantage of the adder for batteries in the state's SMART solar incentive, and they can opt in to the utility's Connected Solutions program to get additional revenue to offset the battery cost."

SunBug is thrilled to be able to count such committed renewable energy enthusiasts at their 2000th customer, and as a show of appreciation is happily discounting the ​couple​ $2000 off their new solar electric system. ​"That discount will be an enormous help to us as we implement these enhancements to our home and quality of life," said Hoogstraten. "We are thrilled to be doing business with SunBug, tickled to find ourselves in the position of being your 2000th customer, and deeply grateful for this gesture."

"Congratulations to SunBug Solar on their 2000th installation," said MassCEC CEO Steve Pike. "MassCEC is pleased to partner with John Hoogstraten and Eileen Keegan, and 5,500 other Massachusetts residents who have accessed clean, renewable solar power through the Mass Solar Loan program."

About SunBug Solar:

SunBug Solar is a local, Massachusetts owned-and-operated solar energy consulting and installation company with offices in Arlington and Westfield, MA. SunBug Solar creates positive environmental and social impact by exemplifying our core values of responsiveness, resourcefulness, and reliability with our customers, within our industry, and among our teammates. Founded in 2009 and a Certified B Corporation since 2018, SunBug has clients across Massachusetts from Great Barrington to Cape Cod. We design and build all types of solar systems, ranging in size from 1kW to over 1MW, including residential, commercial, carports, and ground-mounts. Our integrated approach - from initial education through consultative design to quality installation and ongoing support - has earned SunBug the highest reputation for customer service, and a host of satisfied residential and commercial customers.

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Business, Free News Articles

SunBug Solar Completes Solarize Campaign Out of New Western MA Office

WESTFIELD, Mass. -- SunBug Solar is proud to announce the completion of the sign-up phase of the Solarize Windsor, Cummington, Goshen and Worthington (Solarize Mass WCGW) initiative. Solarize Mass WCGW is part of a Solarize Mass, a partnership between the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC) and the Green Communities Division of the Department of Energy Resources (DOER) that encourages the adoption of small scale solar in Massachusetts communities.

Since its launch in 2011, 62 cities and towns have participated in Solarize Mass. This has led to the contracting of more than 3,500 new small-scale installations at homes and businesses, amounting to the installation of over 21.4 megawatts of solar power.

Solarize programs offer discounted solar installations to community members based on tiered pricing; the more people that sign up, the lower the price. Through the hard work of Solarize volunteers and the SunBug team, Solarize Mass WCGW surpassed the highest pricing tier, resulting in the lowest possible prices for all customers. Over the six-month timeframe, SunBug signed up 90 families representing 767kW of solar.

Aaron Simms, general manager of the SunBug Westfield Office, expressed his excitement, "We are ecstatic with the success of the program. We are especially grateful to the volunteer coaches of the Solarize program, the MassCEC, and most importantly the residents of Windsor, Cummington, Goshen and Worthington for their interest and enthusiasm for the program. We couldn't think of a better way to become part of our community in the western part of the state."

"The Solarize Mass program works because it leverages partnerships with communities across the Commonwealth to help facilitate the adoption of clean energy technologies," said MassCEC CEO Stephen Pike. "The effort and enthusiasm demonstrated by program volunteers and residents of the towns of Windsor, Cummington, Goshen and Worthington during this round were essential to this program's remarkable success."

Bill Adams, the volunteer Solar Coach for the town of Cummington, was equally thrilled with the success of the program. "When you combine the leadership of MassCEC and DOER with an award winning contractor like SunBug Solar and our impressive hilltown volunteers, it resulted in nothing less than a resounding success. Our residents embraced Solarize Mass WCGW knowing it was a clear win-win scenario for renewable energy and our carbon footprint. We couldn't have asked for more."

The 767kW of solar installed through this program will have a meaningful environmental impact. Every year, 767kW of solar on the grid will reduce CO2 emissions equivalent to driving over 760,000 miles in an average car. Over the 30-year life of the systems, they will avert the CO2 emissions equivalent to what nearly 9,000 acres of US forest can sequester in a year.

In addition to the environmental impact, these solar systems are going to be a significant financial boon for the families participating. In Massachusetts, residential solar PV systems have two compensation streams; savings from your electric bill, and compensation from the sale of Solar Renewable Energy Credits. Over the 30 year estimated lifespan of the PV systems, they are expected to generate over $9 Million for the families. What's more, this figure does not include ancillary financial benefits of solar, such as increased re-sale value of the home.

The Solarize campaign is based out of SunBug's new office in Westfield, Mass. In coordination with SunBug's headquarters in Arlington, the Westfield office is executing sales, operations, and installations for Franklin, Hampshire, Hampden, and Berkshire Counties.

SunBug's expansion to the western part of the Commonwealth is an important step forward for a growing organization with strong Massachusetts roots. SunBug Westfield is the result of years of hard work and planning-both in terms of SunBug establishing itself as the highest rated solar installer in Eastern Massachusetts, and for the strategic timing and location of its new office and warehouse.

Founded in 2009, SunBug Solar is as a mission-driven organization-a company that seeks to simultaneously do right by the customer, the community, and the environment. Today, with 75 employees and over 1,000 solar installations throughout the Bay State, SunBug Solar is bringing its unparalleled reputation for quality and customer satisfaction westward. SunBug's commitment to service is recognized by independent industry watchers, including Angie's List, who has awarded SunBug their coveted Super Service Award every year since 2012, making SunBug the sole Massachusetts-based company to have won this award five years running.

More information,

Ben Mayer
(617) 500-3935

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Construction and Building, Environment and Ecology, Free News Articles, Green Business

SunBug Solar Selected as Installer for Solarize WCGW

ARLINGTON, Mass. -- SunBug Solar has been selected as the installer for the upcoming Solarize Mass program for the western Massachusetts towns of Windsor, Cummington, Goshen, and Worthington. The installer selection process was highly competitive, and SunBug Solar was unanimously chosen by town representatives from a competitive pool of eight solar providers.

"SunBug clearly demonstrated their technical knowledge as well as an impressive enthusiasm to be part of our team," said Rev. Alex Hunter, a member of the selection committee.

"Being awarded the project is a great honor for SunBug," said Aaron Simms, general manager of SunBug's western Massachusetts operations. "We are excited to bring attractive, efficient, and affordable photovoltaic systems to these four towns."

SunBug's success in the area prompted them to establish an office and warehouse in Westfield to better address customers that seek SunBug's best-in-class solar consultation, design, installation and service. The timing of the Solarize Mass program for Windsor, Cummington, Goshen, and Worthington couldn't be better as SunBug expands their presence in western Massachusetts.

"At SunBug, we believe a thoughtful approach to solar installation benefits not just the individual customer today, but the entire community for years to come," said Simms. Since being founded in Somerville in 2009, SunBug has developed deep and diverse expertise, with over a thousand homeowner, nonprofit, school, and local business customers in Massachusetts.

SunBug brings strong partners to Solarize WCGW, including: the Mass Solar Loan provider UMassFive College Federal Credit Union; Massachusetts' most successful solar hot water installer, New England Solar Hot Water; the nation's strongest national solar cooperative, Amicus; the Powerwall battery maker Tesla for residential storage, the global leader in high-efficiency photovoltaic modules, SunPower; and SRECTrade, Massachusetts' largest and most experienced SREC broker/aggregator.

The Solarize Mass program is a partnership between the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC) and the Green Communities Division of the Department of Energy Resources (DOER) that encourages the adoption of small scale solar in Massachusetts communities. Since its launch in 2011, 51 cities and towns have participated in Solarize Mass. This has led to the contracting of more than 2,700 new small-scale installations at homes and businesses, amounting to the installation of over 17 megawatts of solar power.

"This program is focused on lowering costs and embracing the power of community solutions to make the adoption of solar electricity more accessible to residents throughout the Commonwealth," said MassCEC Interim CEO Stephen Pike. "We are pleased to partner with Sunbug Solar and provide the environmental and economic benefits this program offers to these communities."

This past June, the towns of Windsor, Cummington, Goshen, and Worthington were awarded a Solarize Mass grant. Residents of these towns qualify for a group purchasing agreement, resulting in discounts on purchasing solar photovoltaic systems that are as much as 25 percent below the average price of solar photovoltaic energy systems in Massachusetts. All homeowners and businesses in these towns are also eligible for free, no-obligation site screenings from SunBug Solar.

For more information on the Solarize WCGW program, please visit

Aaron Simms
General Manager, SunBug Solar's Western Massachusetts Operations

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