We have expanded the list of climate policies we assess company engagement with to incorporate land-use related policy, referring to legislative or regulatory measures to enhance and protect ecosystems and land where carbon is being stored. Assessments under this category are currently underweighted in terms of their contribution to the overall company metrics. This weighting will be progressively increased over the next 6 months.
We adjusted the terminology used to describe the queries running down the left-hand side of our scoring matrix and added additional explanatory text to the info-boxes. This has no impact on the scores and methodology. It has been done following user feedback to improve clarity.
In this section, we depict graphically the relationships the corporation has with trade associations, federations, advocacy groups and other third parties who may be acting on their behalf to influence climate change policy. Each of the columns above represents one relationship the corporation appears to have with such a third party. In these columns, the top, dark section represents the strength of the relationship the corporation has with the influencer. For example if a corporation's senior executive also held a key role in the trade association, we would deem this to be a strong relationship and it would be on the far left of the chart above, with the weaker ones to the right. Click on these grey shaded upper sections for details of these relationships. The middle section contains a link to the organization score details of the influencer concerned, so you can see the details of its climate change policy influence. Click on the middle sections for for details of the trade associations. The lower section contains the organization score of that influencer, the lower the more negatively it is influencing climate policy.
Climate Lobbying Overview: In 2020-22, Wizz Air appear to have mixed engagement with climate policy. Wizz Air appears to support extending the EU emissions trading scheme (EU ETS) and sustainable aviation fuels (SAF) mandate to cover long-haul carriers, while seeming to oppose other key measures to decarbonize aviation, including an EU kerosene tax.
Top-line Messaging on Climate Policy: Wizz Air appear to communicate mixed support for top-line EU climate policy for aviation in 2020-22. In website communications from 2022, Wizz Air stated support for the Paris Agreement to limit global temperature rise to 1.5°C, and the European Green Deal. In a Eurocontrol summit interview in November 2021, Wizz Air CEO, József Váradi, appeared supportive of extending European climate regulation for aviation to cover all international flights, while stressing the cost of EU climate legislation on intra-EU flights. Additionally, in February 2022, a joint statement signed by Wizz Air, and comments from Wizz Air's CEO, urged the EU to increase its climate ambition by expanding the scope of numerous aviation climate policies to include long-haul flights. However, more negatively, a company press release to investors in July 2021, stated “Wizz Air does not support the recently published Fit for 55 proposal by the European Commission”, emphasizing concerns that it would impose high costs on intra-EEA flights.
Engagement with Climate-Related Regulations: Wizz Air appears to have mostly positive engagement with specific EU climate regulations in 2020-22. In a November 2021 response to the EU consultation on the EU ETS, Wizz Air appeared to support the inclusion of private jets alongside the accelerated phase-out of free emissions allowances for aviation. In a February 2022 joint statement on the EU’s Fit for 55 package, Wizz Air further appeared to support the expansion of the EU ETS to include international flights, stating that “full-scope policies protect fair competition, guarantee a level playing field and ensure decarbonization”. Furthermore, according to a September 2022 Politico article, Wizz Air CEO, Jozsef Varadi, appeared to support an extension of the EU ETS to long haul flights, arguing that only targeting short-haul flights would “hand an unfair advantage to long haul carriers”.
Regarding an EU sustainable aviation fuels (SAF) mandate, in March 2021, Wizz Air signed a joint letter to EU policymakers opposing the exclusion of long-haul flights in a potential EU SAF mandate. Similarly, in a joint statement signed in February 2022, Wizz Air stated clear support for an EU SAF mandate, and advocated for a full scope that included all departing EU flights, including long-haul journeys. This position appears to be echoed in a June 2021 Reuters article, with CEO József Váradi highlighting potential risks from competitive distortion with the exemption of long-haul flights.
According to a November 2021 SimpleFlying article, CEO, Jozsef Varadi also supports a carbon tax. Wizz Air also appeared to support the EU’s 2030 55% GHG emissions reductions target in a November 2021 response to an EU consultation.
Positioning on Energy Transition: Wizz Air appears to have mixed positioning on the energy transition. In a November 2021 EU consultation response, Wizz Air criticized a proposed kerosene tax, stating it would “hinder the aviation sector’s recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic”, while supporting its application to cargo flights. Similarly, Wizz Air's 2021 CDP information request response discloses that it "wants a full scope kerosene tax or no tax" at all. The company further stated opposition to the EU’s kerosene tax in it’s Q1 F22 results on the basis it excludes long-haul and cargo flights. Wizz Air's 2021 CDP information request response also states opposition to the UK's Air Passenger Duty ticket tax, while advocating for a tax based on the CO2 emissions of individual passengers. This position appears to be reiterated in a Key.Aero interview with a Senior Executive of Wizz Air in March 2021. A June 2021 UK consultation response further advocated for an APD based on carbon emissions rather than the proposed APD. More positively a March 2021 joint letter to EU policymakers, signed by Wizz Air, suggests support for the electrification and decarbonization of aviation, urging policymakers to “support the development of zero-emissions aircraft”. CEO József Váradi also appeared supportive of hydrogen and electric aircraft in comments for a November 2021 Houston Chronicle article.
Industry Association Governance: Wizz Air does not appear to disclose a list of its industry associations memberships on its corporate website or in their 2021 CDP response. The company has not published a review of its industry association links to assess alignment with its own climate policy positions. InfluenceMap could find no evidence of memberships to climate-active industry associations in our database for Wizz Air.