On its face, 2020 looked like a banner year for renewable energy.

More than 23 gigawatts of wind turbine generating capacity came online across the country, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, shattering the previous record of 13.2 gigawatts added in 2012. The domestic solar industry grew by 43 percent and installed a record 19.2 gigawatts of capacity, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association. Globally, renewables used for generating electricity grew by 7 percent in 2020, in sharp contrast to all other fuels, according to the International Energy Agency.

While the industry showed resiliency during a global pandemic and various lockdowns and business closures, it struggled initially.

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