Environmentally Sustainable Transport (EST) provides for safe, economically viable and socially acceptable access to people, places, goods and services while meeting generally accepted objectives for the protection of health and the environment. The need to fully take account of environmental and health issues in transport policy-making is one of the fundamental elements of developing and implementing EST policies and in achieving EST goals.

Transport’s adverse impacts on health include, the impacts of air pollution and noise and injuries from road accidents, as well as less direct impacts, such as social exclusion and reduced opportunities for physical activity, where transport discourages or impedes cycling and walking. The protection of the environment from transport, includes the protection of ecosystems and minimising the adverse impact on global phenomena such as climate change, stratospheric ozone depletion and the spread of persistent organic pollutants. The use of resources by transport is also an issue so EST would use non-renewable resources below the rates of development of renewable substitutes and renewable resources below their rates of regeneration.