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By idaflo | June 16th, 2010 | No Comments » 

Seed Vault in frozen landscape

The entrance to the underground Svalbard Global Seed Vault juts from a hillside in the Norwegian Arctic. (Credit: John McConnico/Associated Press)

Buried Seed Vault Opens in Arctic

By ANDREW C. REVKIN at The New York Times

[UPDATED, 8:30 a.m.] After several years of planning and digging, the world has its first secure, deep-frozen repository for backup supplies of seeds from hundreds of thousands of plant varieties that underpin agriculture. The Svalbard Global Seed Vault was built into a frigid mountainside in Norway’s northernmost archipelago, deep in the Arctic. It had its ceremonial opening Tuesday morning in the frigid gloom of the Arctic winter. [UPDATE: Many readers wondered about whether it was too close to sea level. But, as I learned in my three Arctic trips, things up there are way more spread out than they appear. The tunnel entrance is 130 meters, or about 400 feet, above sea level. So all can rest easy on that front.]...(continue story here)

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