“Doomsday” Vault Receives Record Number of Seeds

An operator of a frozen vault in the Arctic built to safeguard the world’s agricultural crops from extinction said the remote facility received seeds from the largest number of new contributors to date, yesterday Tuesday.

The Svalbard Global Seed Vault, situated in permafrost caves on an island midway between mainland Europe and the North Pole, was opened in 2008 as the ultimate backup to the global gene bank to protect plants from wars, diseases, and climate change.

 The vault receives samples from around the world and played a crucial role between 2015 and 2019 in rebuilding seed collections damaged during the war in Syria.

According to Reuters, depositors carried seed boxes to the entrance of the vault, a long narrow building protruding from snow-covered hills.

 Twenty-three seed banks participated, nine of them for the first time, marking the largest number of new depositors introduced at one time, according to Crop Trust, a nonprofit organization that manages the facility with Norwegian authorities.

Crop Trust stated that among the first-time depositors were seed banks from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cameroon, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Madagascar, Nigeria, and Zambia.

 It added that the boxes delivered on Tuesday contained crops such as beans, barley, lentils, yellow corn, rice, and oats.

Stefan Schmitz, the organization’s executive director, said, “Preserving genetic diversity in the Arctic ensures adaptability and resilience in our crops, ensuring food security for future generations.”

 The organization noted that many of the deposits made on Tuesday were the result of a 10-year global biodiversity project known as “Bold,” aimed at enhancing global food and food security.

The Norwegian Minister of Agriculture and Food stated that with the recent deposits, 111 seed banks and 77 countries have reserves of their plants in Svalbard.

The temperature inside the rooms, which are opened three times a year to minimize seed exposure to the outside world, is around -18 degrees Celsius.

Show More

Related Articles

Back to top button
Verified by MonsterInsights