MAY 12, 2016 6:50 AM PDT

A Look Inside the Svalbard Seed Vault

WRITTEN BY: Carmen Leitch

What would happen to humankind if our food supply was under threat from war, global warming, or some cataclysm? The Svalbard Seed Vault was established in 2008 to address this concern. Locked away in the Arctic Islands of Svalbard, a group of scientists has collected over 860,000 samples from nearly every nation and stored them in deep freeze. Even if a power failure occurred, the vault would stay sealed and frozen for at least 200 years.

Far earlier than ever imagined, the seed vault has actually already been used. Researchers in the Middle East needed to request samples of wheat, grass and barley specifically suited to dry regions for their research that were ruined during the Syrian war. Certainly, this intriguing facility deserves a close look, and due to the location and mission, it doesn't receive many visitors. Veritaseum takes us inside.
About the Author
  • Experienced research scientist and technical expert with authorships on 28 peer-reviewed publications, traveler to over 60 countries, published photographer and internationally-exhibited painter, volunteer trained in disaster-response, CPR and DV counseling.
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