Handbook on Strategic Environmental Assessment
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Handbook on Strategic Environmental Assessment

Edited by Thomas B. Fischer and Ainhoa González

This comprehensive Handbook shows how Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA), an important decision support tool for strategies, policies, plans and programmes, is applied globally. It reflects on SEA practices and the advancements made over the past three decades in the development of SEA.
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Chapter 11: Strategic environmental assessment in transport planning

Charlotta Faith-Ell and Thomas B. Fischer


In this chapter, the authors’ aim is to provide an overview of current practices of SEA in transport planning. Whilst the main focus will be on experiences from Sweden and Estonia, practices in other countries are also reflected on. Important features of transport planning consist of; (a) a cyclical policy process as, and (b) a process for the development and implementation of transport infrastructure / public transport measures. The cyclical nature of transport planning means that, in most countries, planning processes rarely start with a blank sheet of paper. Instead, decisions made in previous planning cycles and / or by other planning parties influence specific initiatives. Furthermore, strategic planning initiatives in the transport sector often contain both, strategy / policy elements as well as more concrete implementation / spatial elements. SEA has to accommodate the diverse characteristics of a transport plan or policy. In the chapter we reflect on the role of SEA in shaping and assessing transport plans and policies. Importantly, key factors for an effective application of SEA are established and discussed. Finally, we reflect on the future of SEA in transport planning.

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