can you visit the global seed vault

And he’s never asked for it, or even visited. In planning the facility we were not thinking that the world needed a doomsday vault to protect against a global catastrophe, though perhaps this facility might help—who knows? Did you know, that of the 1,700 seed banks worldwide, the Svalbard Global Seed Vault is the largest?Funded entirely by the Norwegian government, the Svalbard Global Seed Vault was designed to be the ultimate seed vault. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Organic Certificate Privacy Policy Your email address will not be published. The depositor continues to own their seeds. Svalbard Global Seed Vault as Seen at Night. But I have Norwegian clothes. That’s not science; that’s just nutty. Only depositors have access to the seed, and they only have access to the seed samples they themselves have deposited in the Seed Vault. Actually in all seriousness, with climate change the way it is, it’s an important way for developing countries to safeguard their food security. In fact my favorite time to visit is in the dead of winter. “If it’s in the news, positive, and governments are involved, there must be something sinister going on behind the scenes that THEY are not telling us about.” That’s how some people feel. Business enquiries only: hello(at)livein10countries(dot)com. CF: “Doomsday Vault” was how a magazine headline writer described it many years ago. Now an expert in living and working abroad, she shares all the tips and tricks you need to get started. :) However, it is out of the secure area without polar bear protection where one needs to … Those conditions are now changing rather rapidly. As a southerner, do you love the cold that much? There’s a sort of plateau around the vault with a sign saying ‘no entry’ that encourages you to keep a couple of minutes’ walk away. The vault has a "Favourite Slots" tab where players can … A small town girl on a mission to live in 10 different countries before she pops her clogs, Danni began travelling with a job in Peru at the age of 18. Is there any basis for these criticisms, and do you have any idea why people would attack a seed vault? Our Story With sadness, I chalk this up to the cynicism that so many people feel these days about almost any attempt to do something good and big. Or 12,000. Some good seed savers will even want to develop new varieties that will become the future’s heritage varieties, just as they have historically. Conspiracy theories and nutty politics will always appeal to a few. As executive director of the Global Crop Diver­sity Trust, he facilitated the establishment of the Svalbard Global Seed Vault. The Svalbard Global Seed Vault The Svalbard Seed Vault is located 1300 kilometers above the Arctic Circle on Spitsbergen, the only populated island of the remote Svalbard archipelago. Both primarily func­tion as an insurance policy for other forms of conservation. Since 1975, SSE and our supporters have collected the seeds and stories that would otherwise have been lost. I don’t buy the conspiracy notion that saving diversity is bad for diversity! Seed Savers Exchange is a non-profit organization located in Decorah, Iowa, with a mission to conserve and promote America's culturally diverse but endangered garden and food crop heritage for future generations by collecting, growing, and sharing heirloom seeds and plants. importance particularly in the context of global warm­ing and climate variability. Heirloom Vegetable Seeds CF: It was built to conserve diversity, not to promote genetic uniformity! Answer 1 of 13: Hello. Job Opportunities The only public bus I know of in this little snpw globe of the north is the svalbard airport shuttle. Learn, Non-GMO Vegetable Seeds And the insula­tion is pretty good, too! Heirloom Corn Seeds The Svalbard Global Seed Vault is undeniably fascinating: This concrete slab that juts out of the barren snowscape may represent humanity’s last hope in an apocalypse. If you want the place to yourself, we found a quiet Saturday – even in the warmest season – to be great. The Barn at Heritage Farm: Renovation (Almost) Complete. Its location is obviously remote, which adds to its security. Can you share with us what you see as the future of seed saving in the U.S.? And that’s true even if there’s no climate change. Only depositors have access to the seed, and they only have access to the seed samples they themselves have deposited in the Seed Vault. It stops at all the local hotels, plus the airport. Last week, I traveled to Svalbard - it’s about as close to the North Pole as one can go by airplane. MT: I’ve read accusations that Svalbard was built to benefit monoculture companies like Monsanto or prominent people like Bill Gates. The seed samples that are deposited in Svalbard can be used to recreate important diversity of plants if the seed samples in a regular gene bank were to be destroyed. The Svalbard "Doomsday" seed vault, which protects the world's food crops, accepts its first consignment of seeds from forest tree species. We should be conserving our rich agricultural heritage, which SSE and Svalbard and indi­viduals help to do, but we also should be adding to this heritage. The 1,750 banks from around the world that have made deposits to this vault can sleep easy knowing their investments are secure. Since then, Cary has worked on these issues all over the world. In fact, we at the Vault never open the boxes or packages sent by the depositor. The context in which the Seed Vault was conceived and built was and is that we are losing diversity both. We’ll send you a link to a feedback form. Because many people don’t like Monsanto, Monsanto-related theories are particularly persistent, though the company has had absolutely no involvement. As executive director of the, Since many of us at Seed Savers Exchange consider Cary to be one of the “family”—he has been on the SSE board and has advised us and spoken at our. The Svalbard Global Seed Bank is located in Svalbard in a Norwegian archipelago (an area of ocean containing many islands) in the Arctic Ocean. There is, however, a wonderful saying that comes from the Middle East that I whisper to myself when I hear or read this craziness: the dogs bark but the caravan moves on. That lowers costs, which increases sustainability. And that, I suppose, explains why a few people who’ve never visited the Vault attack it. In situ, or on-farm, conservation is not a realistic conservation option for these. Inside a mountain in this remote and cold location, the seeds are as safe as they could be on this planet. Located “the farthest north you can fly on a commercial airplane,” the seed vault holds close to one million unique varieties of seeds… Ive been searching for a scene, I think at the end of a movie, with the plot finalizing in something similar to Norway's Global Seed Vault. Its location is obviously remote, which adds to its security. SSE’s seed bank and the Seed Vault are similar in many ways. This means that only around 30% of catalogued seeds around the world have been deposited in Svalbard. A global backstop. Return Policy How to visit the Svalbard Global Seed Vault What is it? And it’s not a tourist attraction (really) but if you’re fascinated by all things quirky and curious – you should see it. This arrangement is formalized through contracts and watched closely by several international bodies, and of course by the depositors themselves. We wanted to put an end to the modern-day extinction of crop diversity. … Since many of us at Seed Savers Exchange consider Cary Fowler to be one of the “family”—he has been on the SSE board and has advised us and spoken at our Campouts —I thought he’d be the best resource to help us under­stand what Svalbard Global Seed Vault is and isn’t. Saving a variety “as is” may not always be the only goal, or even an option. A small town girl on a mission to live in 10 different countries before she pops her clogs! None. And why did you pick such an unusual location? The Norwegian government built the Svalbard Global Seed Vault in 2008 to store seed samples of the world’s crops and plants. 3094 North Winn Road In a vault 120 metres into a mountain, is an iconic building, where no one can go. Heirloom Flower Seeds Required fields are marked *. Martin Teitel: Cary, aside from variations in weather and the size of the collections, what are the differences between the SSE seed bank in Decorah, and the Svalbard seed vault? It ceremonially opened with its first consignment of seeds on February 26, … That lowers costs, which increases sustainability. in farming systems and also in seed banks. It’s protecting samples of 864,000 crop varieties today. It’s kind of a back up against the apocalypse. But, it still doesn’t give him favored treatment or access to the seeds. Depends on when you start counting. The modest funding required is secured by virtue of an endowment (which allows the Vault to offer free storage), and the facility itself offers physical security second to none. You can raise funds for crop conservation by playing Catan: Crop Trust (it’s the perfect gift!) We were focused on and worried about the losses that we were experiencing in seed banks due to mechanical failures, human mistakes, poor funding, and the like. MT: Finally, Cary, it’s the 40th year of the Seed Savers Exchange. Seed Savers Exchange is a nonprofit, member supported organization that collects, preserves and shares heirloom seeds for our future. It is an assurance to reduce of hunger & poverty due to the national disaster. And then they abandon their skepti­cism and accept without question the most outlandish things they find on the internet. The Svalbard Global Seed Vault is a haunting symbol in a warming world. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons - http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Cary_Fowler_2007.jpg#/media/File:Cary_Fowler_2007.jpg). The seed vault is an attempt to ensure against the loss of seeds in other genebanks during large-scale regional or global crises. Neither Monsanto nor Bill Gates have deposited seeds, thus they have nothing to access. The Paphiopedilum glaucophyllum is one of the 491 orchids that is secured both in a Myanmar seed collection and in the Svalbard Global Seed Vault. The seed vault is not an ordinary gene bank that scientists and other interested parties can contact directly for access to the seeds. If a depositing seed bank loses their own sample, there’s another—a duplicate— in the Seed Vault. I would like to pay a visit to the Global Seed Vault - just from the outside, of course. Keep in mind that many of the sam­ples held in Svalbard are of variet­ies no longer grown by farmers. Svalbard is under Norwegian sovereignty, which reassures many, and it was no small matter that Norway offered to pay the entire cost of construction. Snøhetta has designed a visitor centre for the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, which will be built in the Svalbard archipelago within the Arctic Circle. The diversity safeguarded in Svalbard represents the evolutionary options that our crops have for the future. Decorah, Iowa 52101, Customer Service Hours: But this is no safe house for cash or gold, nor is this a fi nancial institution of any kind – it is a giant repository for the world’s precious seed crops. While you’re still not allowed to go in, you can visit the exterior of the Seed Vault to take photos. SSE’s seed bank and the Seed Vault are similar in many ways. I don’t buy the conspiracy notion that saving diversity is bad for diversity! Seed Savers Exchange is a tax-exempt 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation of heirloom seeds. In a vault 120 metres into a mountain, is an iconic building, where no one can go. Subscribe to our newsletter for special offers and seed saving advice. Obviously I’m not suggesting you sneak up for a photo opp. and about a 40 minute walk from the port and main area of Svalbard (human protection?). It’s a bit strung out of town though, so read on to find out all you need to know before you go. In planning the facility we were not thinking that the world needed a doomsday vault to protect against a global catastrophe, though perhaps this facility might help—who knows? And being in one of the most northerly spots on the planet, it’s likely to survive the zombocalypse. To learn more about the Companion and the other benefits of SSE membership, visit seedsavers.org/join. A visit to the Svalbard Global Seed Vault. And you can walk back down the slope to lunch. It’s badly needed — as many as half the seed banks in developing countries are at risk from natural disasters or general instability. CF: The seed saving “fad” is now 40 years old. There is, however, a wonderful saying that comes from the Middle East that I whisper to myself when I hear or read this craziness: “Doomsday Vault” was how a magazine headline writer described it many years ago. And the Seed Vault continues to make sure that a lot of previously vulnerable diversity is safe. Svalbard Global Seed Vault, secure facility built into the side of a mountain on Spitsbergen, the largest of the Svalbard islands (a Norwegian archipelago in the Arctic Ocean), for safeguarding seeds in the event of a global crisis. The Seed Vault, opened by the Norwegian Government in February of 2008, is the largest and most diverse seed security … Either way, there are decent views from just beyond the entrance, where you can snap a few pics. Without diversity, there is no adaptation, and without adaptation, extinc­tion is inevitable. It’s really that simple. Is there any basis for these criticisms, and do you have any idea why people would attack a seed vault? But they aren’t really fending visitors off with sticks. Blogging more than five years on long term travel, working holidays and more. But I have Norwegian clothes. And why did you pick such an unusual location? Gosh, hundreds of media, including famous investiga­tive reporters, have visited the Seed Vault, and none have found anything bad to say about the effort. Svalbard is found north of mainland Europe, halfway between continental Norway and the North Pole, according to the Norwegian Ministry of Agriculture and Food. Together with Genesys, The Crop Trust has helped create a global portal of seeds that houses information on over 2.8 million plant samples found in various seed banks around the globe. The context in which the Seed Vault was conceived and built was and is that we are losing diversity both in farming systems and also in seed banks. I don’t mind the cold. The need, skill, and privilege of doing such things was not something that disappeared just before we were born! Because they were adapted to local conditions knowing their investments are secure own sample there! Is no trans­fer of physical or intellectual property rights from the depositor to the seeds more. 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