www.theverge.com - 1 year ago

First seed withdrawal from 'doomsday' vault prompted by Syrian civil war

Scientists are preparing to make the first ever withdrawal from the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, a seed bank built in an abandoned Arctic coal mine that's designed to preserve crops and plants in the event of global disaster. The civil war in Syria has prompted the withdrawal, with researchers in the Middle East requesting seeds to replace those previously stored in a gene bank in the war-torn Syrian city of Aleppo. "Protecting the world's biodiversity in this manner is precisely the purpose of the Svalbard Global Seed Vault," a spokesperson for the seed bank, Brian Lainoff, told Reuters.

Some 130 boxes containing 116,000 samples have been requested by the International Center for Agricultural Research in Dry Areas or ICARDA. The ...

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