William M. Buchan, a lawyer who is working with the town and village of Canton on solar issues, told village trustees last month that the odds of stopping EDF Renewables from installing a 1,700-acre solar project were “infinitesimally small.”

When he declared this April 19, he wasn’t saying something that anyone paying attention didn’t already know. New York has an aggressive timetable for decarbonizing its electricity system, and it’s largely cut municipal governments out of the project-siting process.

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