Have you ever wondered what lies at the limits of polar human habitation? Is there anything important there?

Image: The doomsday seed vault at night

Source: The Guardian

Your guess probably doesn’t include a massive vault filled with seeds from around the world housed inside of a mountain!

This is the entrance to the Svalbard Seed Vault

Image: The entrance to the Svalbard Seed Vault, a massive concrete structure jutting out of the side of a snowy mountain

Source: Crop Trust

The vault is buried deep within a mountain safe from sea rise, global warming, natural disaster, and acts of war. It’s a remarkable place, and on this edition of Saturdays Around the World, we take you to Svalbard, Norway, and the northernmost town on earth to check it out!

Let’s tag along with Veritasium to explore this fascinating place…

The Seed Vault is an incredible marvel of engineering and science, but its setting is equally as remarkable.

This place, that holds the seeds to keeping humanity alive, is set at the reaches of human settlement. It is a jaw-dropping and beautiful place with a unique history…

A Unified Look at the World Ahead…

Places like the Svalbard Seed Vault serve as reminders of how important moving forward as a unified globe is to the preservation of this planet and ourselves.

We live on an interconnected planet. We can no longer ignore the problems of our neighbor in favor of protecting our own self-interests. In order to tackle the problems we face we must do so as a unified community.

The Seed Vault, with its boxes from all nations sitting next to one another, regardless of the status of their sending country’s political stance toward one another, is somehow symbolic of the need to recognize the shared importance of this planet to us all.

Perhaps we should take a moment to appreciate our common ground and the shared desires we have even with those we believe to be in opposition to us. Because it is on common ground, with an eye toward the future, that we can begin the important conversations that must be had to change the dialogue about our world!

Stay beautiful & keep laughing!

-Liesl

“Laughter is the shortest distance between two people.”-Victor Borge

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Notes:

  1. “Inside the Svalbard Seed Vault.” YouTube. Veritasium, 04 May 2016. Web. 05 June 2016. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2_OEsf-1qgY>.
  2. “The Northernmost Town on Earth (Svalbard in 4K).” YouTube. Veritasium, 13 Apr. 2016. Web. 05 June 2016. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5NhIRwCq428>.

Liesl Ulrich-Verderber

COO Ever Widening Circles

Liesl is a camera-toting traveler, a global story seeker, and an aspiring—but more often floundering—yoga lover. She can be found on Instagram @Liesl.UV