Norway to spend $12.7M in upgrades to ‘doomsday’ seed vault


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Does Norway know one thing we don’t?

The Scandinavian nation introduced Monday that it will spend about $12.7 million to improve its “doomsday” seed vault that’s the world’s largest repository constructed to safeguard in opposition to wars or pure disasters wiping out world meals crops.

The Verge reported that the upgrades will concentrate on a brand new concrete tunnel and “emergency energy and refrigerated items and different electrical gear that emeits warmth by way of the tunnel.”

The Svalbard World Seed Vault, a gene financial institution constructed underground on an remoted island in a permafrost zone some 620 miles from the North Pole, was opened in 2008 as a grasp backup to the world’s different seed banks, in case their deposits are misplaced.

The newest specimens despatched to the financial institution, positioned on the Svalbard archipelago between mainland Norway and the North Pole, included greater than 15,000 reconstituted samples from a global analysis heart that focuses on bettering agriculture in dry zones. They have been the primary to retrieve seeds from the vault in 2015 earlier than returning new ones after multiplying and reconstituting them.

The specimens consisted of seed samples for a few of the world’s most important meals sources like potato, sorghum, rice, barley, chickpea, lentil and wheat.

The company borrowed the seeds three years in the past as a result of it couldn’t entry its gene financial institution of 141,000 specimens within the war-torn Syrian metropolis of Aleppo, and so was unable to regenerate and distribute them to breeders and researchers.

Fifty thousand samples have been deposited final yr from seed collections in Benin, India, Pakistan, Lebanon, Morocco, Netherlands, the U.S., Mexico, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Belarus and Britain. It introduced the overall deposits within the snow-covered vault — with a capability of four.5 million — to 940,000.

The Related Press contributed to this report

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