losangelesnewstoday.com
losangelesnewstoday.com June 25, 2017


Defences of 'doomsday' seed vault tightened after breach

25 May 2017, 01:14 | Kristen Gross

Arctic stronghold of world's seeds flooded after permafrost melts

Experts are waiting to see how the effects will pan out – and are wondering if it will escalate as temperatures continue to soar according to the Guardian. They’re now working to waterproof the massive tunnel create trenches that will channel excess

(CNN) - Unseasonably warm temperatures last fall caused water to breach the entrance to the Arctic's so-called "Doomsday" seed vault, one of humanity's last hopes after a global catastrophe, the company that manages the vault said last week.

An ice covered entrance door to the worldwide gene bank Svalbard Global Seed Vault (SGSV) near Longyearbyen on Spitsbergen, Norway, October 20, 2015.

The vault now holds 930,000 seed samples from all over the world but can store up to 4.5 million seed samples for hundreds of years. Yes, there had been "season-dependent intrusion of water" into the outer part of the seed vault, but the group was now taking precautionary measures to make improvements to the outer tunnel to prevent future occurrences.

But the vault's managers are now constructing a waterproof wall inside for additional protection, a Norwegian government spokeswoman told AFP, adding all heat sources would also be removed from inside the vault.

"Some journalists call this the 'Noah's Ark of plant diversity.' And personally, I think that's quite a good name", Svalbard Global Seed Vault coordinator Åsmund Asdal said to Motherboard. But with climate change seemingly only accelerating, it isn't yet known whether more might need to be done.

NASCAR's Aric Almirola out 8-12 weeks with broken back
No timetable is known for when Almirola may return, nor who will drive the No. 43 auto past the All-Star Race. They had no idea was what wrong with me.

Earlier this year, the Global Seed Vault in Svalbard was flooded after record high temperatures over the winter caused some of the permafrost surrounding the vault to melt, reports The Guardian. Fortunately, the meltwater did not reach the vault itself, the ice has been hacked out, and the precious seeds remain safe for now at the required storage temperature of -18C. Just like agriculture seeds, scientists recently opened a second vault to save the world's book collections, which will be stored in digital format.

Prime Minister of Norway, Jens Stoltenberg, unlocked the vault at a ceremony and, together with the African Nobel Peace Prize-winning environmentalist Wangari Maathai, who placed the first seeds in the vault.

And all of this is happening as the melting of Arctic sea ice has hastened, threatening permafrost beneath roads and buildings from Alaska to Siberia.

Hege Njaa Aschim, an official of the Norwegian government, said: "A lot of water went into the start of the tunnel and then it froze to ice, so it was like a glacier when you went in".

The seed vault, also referred to as the "doomsday" vault, is built 400 feet into a mountain slope in Spitsbergen island. They're digging drainage tunnels, removing some excess electrical equipment, and installed pumps just in case. It is a big responsibility and we take it very seriously. If anything dramatic should happen elsewhere around the world, we want these seeds to be there.



Other News

Trending Now

Palestinians observe general strike as prisoners continue hunger strike for day 36
Medics and protesters evacuate a wounded youth during clashes on the Israeli border eastern Gaza City, Friday, May 19, 2017. Last week, reports emerged over talks between Israeli and Palestinian officials aimed at ending the strike.

President Trump: Firing FBI chief eases "great pressure" on him from probe
A third major story dropped on Friday afternoon , with respect to President Donald Trump and the Russian Federation investigation. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein told Congress Friday he stands by a memo he wrote bluntly criticizing Comey.

Erdogan to return to Turkey's ruling party as its chairman
Erdogan led the party for three terms during his premiership between 2003 and 2014, after he co-founded it in 2001. Erdogan becomes the fourth president to retain his party ties.

Lewis Hamilton retains respect for Sebastian Vettel after Spain battle
They did a wonderful job with the strategy and the pit stops". "It is a real privilege to race against someone as good as him". Bottas was later forced to stop his Mercedes when it started spouting smoke midway through the race.

Day misses out in sudden-death playoff
Hahn also shot 64 in the opening round and used just 29 putts, the same number he had on Saturday. He made the 4-foot birdie putt to finish alone in third, one stroke ahead of Jason Kokrak. 16-18.

Bilic wants 'high-quality' West Ham signings; Adrian extends stay
West Ham have recently been linked in media reports with City striker Iheanacho and full-back Zabaleta. The injured Michail Antonio is West Ham's top Premier League goalscorer this season with nine goals.

Samsung smartphones could feature stretchable OLED displays at some point in future
While consumers are yet to see rollable or flexible displays on smartphones, in a lab sense, they have been around for some time. One Samsung Display spokesperson described the several properties of this stretchable OLED panel (via Korea Herald ).

Hope for improved China, South Korea relations after leaders speak
I am willing to go anywhere for the peace of the Korean Peninsula - if needed, I will fly immediately to Washington. That played into the hands of Moon, who has written that South Korea should "learn to say no" to Washington.

Indian Army destroys Pakistani posts across the Line of Control
Indian Army's statement on counter insurgency operations comes in backdrop of heightened tensions between New Delhi and Islamabad. On Tuesday, the Indian Army said that it had targetted Pakistani posts that were aiding infiltrators into India.

After WannaCry, the Shadow Brokers promise to unleash more NSA exploits soon
Shadow Brokers claims to have about 75 per cent of the US cyber-arsenal, says Sean Dillon, senior security analyst at RiskSense. The Shadow Brokers stated that future leaks could include exploits and hacking tools for web browsers, routers and handsets.