State Representative Ann-Margaret Ferrante Announces Availability of JOE-4-SUN Solar Credits

State Rep. Ann-Margaret Ferrante (D-Gloucester) today announced the availability of $300 in annual household electricity savings through JOE-4-SUN, the state’s largest Low-Income Community Shared Solar program.

The initiative from Boston-based Citizens Energy Corporation, launched earlier this month, offers discount solar credits to about 2,000 low-income Massachusetts families each year.

“This is a terrific new program from my good friend, former Congressman Joe Kennedy, who has been helping low-income families in Massachusetts, the U.S., and around the world meet their energy needs with innovative programs for over 40 years,” said the six-term representative. “I encourage Gloucester families to look into this program before the subscriptions fill up.”

As a participant in the state’s SMART (Solar Massachusetts Renewable Target) initiative, Citizens Energy is building five solar arrays on capped landfills around the state – in Bridgewater, Ayer, Springfield, Spencer and Ashland.

The 16 megawatts of electricity generated from the five projects will produce bill credits to be sold at a 50% discount to subscribers. As the largest Low-Income Community Shared Solar initiative in Massachusetts, JOE-4-SUN will offer guaranteed savings of about $10 million to 35,000 low-income Bay State families over the course of its 20-year lifespan.

Ferrante, a strong supporter of clean energy, played a key role in marshalling support for the legislation creating the state’s Low-Income Community Shared Solar programs.

“Rep. Ferrante has been a great advocate for renewable energy and finding ways to bring low-income families into the green revolution,” said Citizens Energy Chairman Joseph P. Kennedy II. “I welcome her support of JOE-4-SUN and our efforts to reduce our carbon footprint, cut greenhouse gas emissions, and extend the benefits of renewable energy to low-income households while cutting their electricity costs.”

In order to be eligible for JOE-4-SUN, renters or homeowners must be R-2 discount customers in the National Grid or Eversource service territories. Subscribers will continue to receive their R-2 discount on top of the savings from JOE-4-SUN. Citizens Energy will enroll households in the JOE-4-SUN program for at least 12 months.

Households interested in subscribing to JOE-4-SUN must apply on-line by visiting the Citizens Energy website at If questions arise not answered on the website, they can call the toll-free number 855-JOE-4-SUN (855-563-4786) or send an email to for further information.

Citizens Energy Puts Focus on Renewables

Goodbye, JOE-4-OIL.

Hello, JOE-4-SUN.

Like many other energy companies, Joe Kennedy II’s Citizens Energy has shifted its focus from fossil fuels to renewable energy.

That was quite evident on Thursday, when Citizens Energy and Kennedy, the nonprofit’s chairman, held an event in Revere to showcase their new community-shared solar program for low-income residents.

The announcement was made at the home of Nancy DiGaetano, a grandmother who is the program’s first participant, and drew House Speaker Bob DeLeo and Revere Mayor Brian Arrigo.

Citizens Energy, through a for-profit arm, is building five solar arrays on capped former landfills across the state: in Ashland, Ayer, Bridgewater, Spencer, and Springfield.

Together, these five solar projects will generate 16 megawatts of electricity, making it the largest low-income, shared-solar community initiative in the state.

Like similar initiatives, this program gives renters and others who wouldn’t otherwise be able to directly benefit from solar power an opportunity to do so.

Participating low-income households get electricity at roughly a 50 percent discount through the sale of credits related to the power generated by the solar panels, saving them $150 a year.

Citizens Energy needs to sign up at least 3,500 low-income customers to fully benefit from the reimbursement rates for these kinds of programs established by state regulations.

To do so, chief executive Pete Smith says, Citizens will launch a marketing campaign on its social media channels and reach out to nonprofit partners it has worked with in the past to drive potential customers to the website, at

For now, there won’t be any ads on TV for JOE-4-SUN like the JOE-4-OIL spots, Smith says. Citizens’ heating oil assistance program ended four years ago, when Citgo stopped donating the fuel.

Good Day For Sunshine