Hungarian-owned airline Wizz Air won the title of Global Environmental Sustainability Airline Group of the Year for the second time at the CAPA (Centre for Aviation) awards ceremony and the Asian Aviation Summit in Kuala Lumpur, the company announced on Friday.
CAPA recognizes airlines and airports that focus on climate change in their business policies and strive for carbon neutrality. According to the statement, Wizz Air was recognized for its unwavering commitment to sustainability. The European ultra-low-cost airline operates one of the world’s youngest aircraft fleets. In the 2023 financial year, Wizz Air reduced its carbon emissions to 53.8 grams per passenger-kilometre, representing an 11 per cent decrease compared to the previous financial year. To achieve this, the company heavily invested in its fleet, replacing older aircraft with the latest technology Airbus A321neo aircraft, which offer significant environmental benefits, including nearly 50 per cent less noise and nitrogen oxide emissions and a 20 per cent reduction in carbon dioxide emissions compared to the previous model.
Additionally, Wizz Air has established a sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) strategy.
In 2023, the airline invested £5 million in a British biofuel manufacturing company, Firefly, for the first time in its history.
The company also participated in a $50 million funding round for CleanJoule, a US startup focused on biofuels, to support SAF research and development.
The statement quoted Wizz Air CEO József Váradi, who said that receiving the CAPA international sustainability award for the second consecutive year is a great honour. This victory confirms their commitment to reducing their carbon intensity by an additional 25 per cent by 2030.
Wizz Air currently operates a fleet of 189 Airbus A320 and A321 aircraft. In the financial year ending on 31 March 2023, the airline carried 51.1 million passengers.
According to publicly available company data, the net sales revenue of Wizz Air Hungary Airline Co Ltd amounted to €3.99 billion in its business year from 1 April 2022, to 31 March 2023, compared to €1.78 billion in the previous year. The company reported a loss of €400.19 million in the past business year, whereas it had a loss of €18.32 million in the 2021–2022 period.
The Global Environmental Sustainability Airline Group of the Year is an award conferred on airlines that demonstrate outstanding commitment and achievements in the area of sustainability and environmental responsibility within the aviation industry. This award recognizes airlines that have made significant efforts to reduce their carbon footprint, promote eco-friendly practices, and contribute to a more sustainable and environmentally responsible aviation sector. The specific criteria and selection process for this award may vary depending on the organization or body presenting it, such as the Centre for Aviation (CAPA) in the provided text. It is essentially a recognition of an airline’s efforts to operate in an environmentally responsible manner and contribute to a more sustainable future for air travel.