Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Australia sends seeds to Norway Doomsday Vault

Isn't this a pleasant post! Australia are sending the first of which will be many deposits of seeds to an international seed bank. The seeds are transported to a chilled Norwegian bunker near the North Pole, where they have collected seeds as an insurance policy against disease and disaster.

The seeds Australia have sent are from a Horsham seed bank and includes a rare Australian chickpea. The seeds are being sent on Friday to the remote island of Spitsbergen, 1300 kilometres from the North Pole.

Now onto the more interesting bit of this news, the vault.

The Svalbard Global Seed Vault, which is often referred to as the "doomsday vault" is an ex-coalmine that has stored seeds for nearly three-decades.

The vault has an ever-expanding collection which contain samples from 1/3 of the world's most important food crop varieties. Numbers are in the 400, 000 mark, which are all stored underground at minus 18 degrees.

It really hits home, with all of the scary-stuff happening world wide in the form of bird and fish deaths, earthquakes, flash-flooding in Queensland, Australia and the various other constant wars and famine - that this type of stuff is done (which is in a way a good thing), it just really makes you think.

A vault for seeds, what else do they have stored?

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