Groups sue feds to force Washington to protect Puget Sound
SEATTLE — An environmental group is suing the federal government to force Washington state to do more to protect Puget Sound from polluted runoff from roads, farms, logging and boats.
The lawsuit, filed Wednesday, seeks to force the Environmental Protection Agency and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to cut funding to the state for failing to protect coastal water quality.
A similar lawsuit by the same group — Portland, Oregon-based Northwest Environmental Advocates — resulted in the agencies cutting $1.2 million in grant funding to Oregon this year.
The group says the agencies first told Washington in 1998 that it was failing to control such pollution, but there’s no evidence Washington has done any better, and the feds have not cut off funding in response as the law requires.
The EPA declined to comment.
The pollution is a major threat to protected salmon and orcas.