SEATTLE (AP) — A settlement in federal court could clear the way for an important environmental restoration project at the mouth of the Snohomish River in Everett.

The Justice Department announced Monday that to remedy past pollution the Port of Everett had agreed to rehabilitate and maintain Blue Heron Slough, a roughly 340-acre project that includes intertidal estuary and upland habitats. The U.S. Navy will contribute nearly $800,000.

Three companies — Weyerhaeuser Corp., Jeld-Wen Inc. and Kimberly Clark Corp. — agreed last year to pay close to $4 million for damage they caused by operating mills and manufacturing operations in the area dating to the early 1900s.

The federal government, Washington state and the Suquamish and Tulalip Tribes brought the legal actions that resulted in the settlement, which still requires court approval.

The restoration work is expected to help salmon and other wildlife.