In 2001, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers standard to determine which of the nations’ bodies of water deserve protection, calling it overly broad. But the high court didn’t say what the standard should be, an issue the corps has been struggling to resolve ever since. Now, the dilemma has come home to roost in Seabrook, Texas, where the Port of Houston wants to build a mammoth container port. When the Army Corps evaluated the project prior to the Supreme Court decision, it estimated that more than 100 acres of wetlands would be lost; after the decision, that estimate dropped to fewer than three acres as the corps developed a new standard for wetlands protection. Overall, wetlands overseen by the corps along the Texas coast have dwindled by 60 percent since 2000. Conservationists, who have long questioned the ability of the corps to adequately protect the environment, are battling to expand the definition of wetlands — but they fear that if they lose the Seabrook battle, they’ll lose the entire war.