Sunak to allow oil and gas exploration at sites intended for offshore wind

Exclusive: decision to grant licences condemned by critics as a stunt that shows Tories are ‘playing politics with climate’

Fossil fuel companies will be allowed to explore for oil and gas under offshore wind-power sites for the first time, the government will announce on Friday, in a move which campaigners say is further proof that ministers are abandoning the climate agenda.

The North Sea Transition Authority (NSTA), which regulates North Sea oil and gas production, will confirm that it is granting licences to about 30 companies to look for hydrocarbons on sites earmarked for future offshore windfarms.

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