The Guardian reports that the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, a seed bank near Longyearbyen on the Norwegian island of Spitsbergen, has flooded due to "melting and heavy rain." The seeds remain safe, according to the article.
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On the high plateau of Antarctica the temperature varies between −26.0 to −63.4 ⁰C it just might be a better place to do this and similar climate can surely be found on the North Pole. And it can be done as a backup. Dig a hole, build a bunker, seal it.
Ice acts as a elastic solid below 30 meters height of ice weight, ie glaciers. So a pressure of less than 272 kN/m² will stay in the elastic region and not let objects plasticly sink straight through. That would allow a build of a 13 meter high tower of solid concrete before it sinks. It would not be a hard stretch to build a bunker cube with 1 meter walls filled with essentially empty space and have it stay in place It could get covered in snow, but that can be handled with a high stairwell inside a wide pipe etc.
For 1000 m² floor space with 3 meter height and a vertical access tunnel of 4x4 meter and 10 meter height would use something like 2600 m³ of concrete. If serious melting is expected ie Arctic goes wet, then shape it like a boat.
It worked for Gilgamesh.
The most important thing is to place copies around the world.
You want locations that can support suitable staff. Generally, this means universities.
You should have diversity of government due to war. Don't go 100% NATO, or 100% pacific rim, or 100% OPEC, or 100% in any other alliance. This applies not just to the physical location. It also applies to funding sources and staff citizenship.
Yeah, there's that.
Another thing is, just as with data backups, you need to verify the viability of what you have.Standard practice is to replant a portion of the stock every X years and collect the resulting new seeds. [google.com]If you don't have soil nearby and a reasonable growing season, that makes things more difficult.
-- OriginalOwner_ [soylentnews.org]