War Forces Us To Make First Withdrawal Ever From Doomsday Seed Vault

War Forces Us To Make First Withdrawal Ever From Doomsday Seed Vault

Scientists have requested the first ever withdrawal from the Svalbard Global Seed Vault in order to restock a supply damaged by the fighting in Syria.

In vault-related news that has nothing to with Fallout, scientists made the first withdrawal from the Svalbard Global Seed Vault this week.

Often referred to as the Earth's "Doomsday Vault," the SGSV houses the world's backup supply of seeds to ensure biodiversity and keep relics of plants alive as extinctions take hold. It is located deep within a mountain on a remote archipelago in Norway. It would make a pretty good super villain secret base, to be honest.

The request to withdraw seeds came from the International Center for Agricultural Research in Dry Areas, another gene bank. Currently, the organization is based in Beirut, Lebanon, but was formerly head-quartered in Syria. As the fighting began, caretakers were able to remove most of the collection from ICARDA, but some workers stayed behind in Aleppo. While a promising 80% of its stock has been replicated since moving to Lebanon, ICARDA had plenty of empty space.

"ICARDA has worked extremely hard and with extreme dedication to try and do their best during this time," says Brian Lainoff of the Crop Trust, which runs the Global Seed Vault.

There are gene banks like ICARDA the world over. The Svalbard vault is a last-resort back-up plan for all of them. It has nearly a million different varieties of crop plants under ice, waiting for their moment in the sun - and with the world changing so rapidly, it only becomes more important every day.

"If something were to happen to one of those collections around the world, they can always come back to the seed vault and retrieve what might have been lost," Lainoff explains.

Despite violent the backdrop for this story, the existence of agencies such as ICARDA and SGSV can give a person a great deal of hope. Then again, war... war never changes.

Source: Crop Trust

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It should be remembered that "first ever" is also "first time in 7 years", it's only been there since 2008.

thaluikhain:
It should be remembered that "first ever" is also "first time in 7 years", it's only been there since 2008.

That makes me just think about how bad it has to be, for a final reserve to be drawn from this soon.

I think it was a mistake. The war in Syria may damage crops, but the humanitarian crisis and the civil war going on there won't be solved by supplying farmers with seeds - most of them are under the rule of one terrorist organization or another, and some of them are executed as soon as their lands are overtaken by a rival terrorist group because they "chose sides". It's totally ineffective, and if it damages the Doomsday vault (which is there for a reason) it's not worth it.
I'm all for humanitarian aid to those who have insisted on staying in their lands, but we can't go on pretending they can live their normal lives with normal jobs. Give them rations and supplies, and let them take on journalism or establish safe communities. That way the outside world can get more data about what's going on and who they should support, or let them make the decision themselves so more civilians can be helped.
Either way, trying to sow a warzone isn't effective, and even if you do manage grow crops - you're just making yourself a target for starved combatants. So it isn't the way to go.

Made in China, the withdrawal was not done for farmers but to help one of the higher level gene banks recover lost stock from an emergency move to get away from the war in Syria.

Ultimatecalibur:
Made in China, the withdrawal was not done for farmers but to help one of the higher level gene banks recover lost stock from an emergency move to get away from the war in Syria.

This is correct. It seems that at first glance what actually happened is that the war is so bad that all of the crops were destroyed.

Actually, it's just that a seed bank in Syria had to move quickly, and as such lost some stock. So they just top up that stock from the back-up vault.

Well, that's what I get for jumping to conclusions. Sorry for turning this more scientific-based article for something more political.

thaluikhain:
It should be remembered that "first ever" is also "first time in 7 years", it's only been there since 2008.

LOL takes the wind out of the sail a bit when you bring that up...

Wouldn't it be smarter to wait to make the withdrawl until the fighting in Syria is over so they don't risk the withdrawn supplies being damaged as well and forcing them to have to withdraw even more?

Made in China:
I think it was a mistake. The war in Syria may damage crops, but the humanitarian crisis and the civil war going on there won't be solved by supplying farmers with seeds - most of them are under the rule of one terrorist organization or another, and some of them are executed as soon as their lands are overtaken by a rival terrorist group because they "chose sides". It's totally ineffective, and if it damages the Doomsday vault (which is there for a reason) it's not worth it.
I'm all for humanitarian aid to those who have insisted on staying in their lands, but we can't go on pretending they can live their normal lives with normal jobs. Give them rations and supplies, and let them take on journalism or establish safe communities. That way the outside world can get more data about what's going on and who they should support, or let them make the decision themselves so more civilians can be helped.
Either way, trying to sow a warzone isn't effective, and even if you do manage grow crops - you're just making yourself a target for starved combatants. So it isn't the way to go.

Space Jawa:
Wouldn't it be smarter to wait to make the withdrawl until the fighting in Syria is over so they don't risk the withdrawn supplies being damaged as well and forcing them to have to withdraw even more?

Have you guys read the article? Noones trying to sow Syria into peace. Basically another Genebank of seeds, specialized on dry areas, was based in Syria before and they lost a few samples when they had to move due to the war. They got seeds from the doomsday vault to restock their own genebank, not in order to sow.
And their now based in Lebanon, not in Syria anymore.

Edit: I actually read up on our "Doomsday vault" right now and this is exactly what it's there for. Not for some kind of Armagedon to repopulate our plant world, like the article suggests, but rather to restock other genebanks in case they should loose samples due to global or local crisies.

Naqel:

thaluikhain:
It should be remembered that "first ever" is also "first time in 7 years", it's only been there since 2008.

That makes me just think about how bad it has to be, for a final reserve to be drawn from this soon.

Not bad at all. Well, not to say the Syria War is minor (it's not) but they aren't withdrawing seeds to plant them due to devastation. They are withdrawing seeds to restock a seed bank that was formerly held in Syria and was moved due to the war. It's not nearly as bad as people seem to be thinking.

This depressingly reminds me of this Hotel.
I hope it won't come soon and I can die a rather peaceful death before this happens.

I was initially under the impression this is the only one genebank. I'm pretty naive today, but I've been hearing a lot over the years about the loss of biodiversity.

Is the Seed Vault really needed? I mean sure, we might have to jump through a few hoops to find one, but the G.E.C.K was invented for a reason.

Interesting story. I'm glad these vaults exist. But it's a bit more hyperbolic sounding than it is. It's not like the vault had seeds taken from it because of bad crop situations, though I'm sure the crop situation in Syria is complete shit at this point. It's rare that I say anything like this, but it's time someone stepped in and ended that senseless conflict. We have millions fleeing the country as refugees and the remaining two conflicting sides are massively self destructive so far as the land and remaining people are concerned.

Made in China:
I think it was a mistake. The war in Syria may damage crops, but the humanitarian crisis and the civil war going on there won't be solved by supplying farmers with seeds - most of them are under the rule of one terrorist organization or another, and some of them are executed as soon as their lands are overtaken by a rival terrorist group because they "chose sides". It's totally ineffective, and if it damages the Doomsday vault (which is there for a reason) it's not worth it.
I'm all for humanitarian aid to those who have insisted on staying in their lands, but we can't go on pretending they can live their normal lives with normal jobs. Give them rations and supplies, and let them take on journalism or establish safe communities. That way the outside world can get more data about what's going on and who they should support, or let them make the decision themselves so more civilians can be helped.
Either way, trying to sow a warzone isn't effective, and even if you do manage grow crops - you're just making yourself a target for starved combatants. So it isn't the way to go.

Did you read that article, the request was from other gene bank that had to move away from Syria.

I see people have a horrendous misunderstanding of how this shit works, natural seeds are not a finite resource, the seed vaults can reproduce those seeds until the end of times so long as there is any seed left. In fact anyone with any spit of dirt can reproduce seeds, I am quite surprised people have not learned that in school.

And I particularly said natural seeds because most "super crop" GMOs do not reproduce properly, either by design or mistake those fuckers are good for one year only and have farmers depend on seed growing factories. So I hope these gene banks will share their resources with greater regularity, not become some sort of government access only ordeal.

Smooth Operator:
And I particularly said natural seeds because most "super crop" GMOs do not reproduce properly, either by design or mistake those fuckers are good for one year only and have farmers depend on seed growing factories.

Not so. While Monsanto and their terminator gene seed are well known, that's not to say they are typical of GMOs. Monsanto is a terrible company and gives the whole industry a bad name most of the rest of them don't deserve.

 

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