Lawsuit seeks to change how Army Corps regulates shorelines

SEATTLE (AP) — Three conservation groups are suing the Army Corps of Engineers over how it regulates seawalls, bulkheads or other barriers built along shorelines across Puget Sound.

Sound Action, Friends of The San Juans and the Washington Environmental Council want the Corps to better regulate so-called “shoreline armoring” projects.

Such concrete or rock structures can prevent erosion and protect waterfront homes, but they also alter and shrink beaches and disrupt spawning habitat for juvenile salmon, forage fish and other species.

The lawsuit filed Monday in federal court in Seattle argues the government’s definition of shoreline is too lax, allowing projects built along shores and in tidal areas to escape federal review.

An email and message left with Army Corps’ in Seattle was not immediately returned.