History has shown that there is a possibility of human mass extinction event. In such an event the collateral damage is usually the means for survival for humans which includes agricultural products. To this effect, the Svalbard Global Seed Vault was constructed in Norway to ensure seed preservation and variation. Currently, there are about 1,400 seed banks globally, but the Svalbard seed vault is designed to stand the test of time and ensure the preservation of seeds facing extinction as well as ensure that agriculture is not lost in the event of a human mass extinction event.
A report by the National Geographic highlights that the Norway vault accumulate seed samples from the other seed banks around the world in packages that will remain sealed (Roach, 2007). If we think about if the approach is necessary considering the current human behavior of continuous wars and environmental degradation. In the event where there is a mass human extinction event, agriculture will also face the threat of extinction. Thus, there is need to preserve the seeds which the remaining people would use for agriculture.
Whether or not the approach will work depends on the nature of the extinction catastrophe. In case of pandemics and outbreaks, the facility may hold but if the catastrophe is manmade such as war then the facility may be targeted and destroyed. However, if the vault survives and the mass extinction event comes to pass, the facility would be crucial to rebuilding civilization. Furthermore, researchers should also endeavor to preserve animal species that are adapted to survival in harsh conditions as well as those species that are genetically enhanced through cross breeding and are more productive. Animals are crucial to both agricultural production as well as the ecosystem and therefore the strong animal species genes need be preserved.
Roach, J. (2007). “Doomsday” Vault Will End Crop Extinction, Expert Says. Retrieved from com/news/2007/12/071227-seed-vault_2.html”>https://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2007/12/071227-seed-vault_2.html
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