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Airport to Join International Enviro Program

3 December 2009

Sydney Metro Airport Join the International Environmental Program – Millennium Seed Bank

The Sydney Metro Airport Environment Team continues to preserve the valuable ecological heritage and endangered flora species on the Airport participating in the Millennium Seed Bank Program.

“Recently the environment team has worked with leading botanists from the Royal Botanic Gardens to collects seeds from the endangered Hibbertia glaberscens MS species,” said Ms Desiree Lammerts, Environment Manager, Sydney Metro Airport Bankstown.

“The seed collection is part of the Millennium Seed Bank Program which is coordinated by Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, London UK, involving 50 countries around the world. It is our goal is to collect several thousand seeds from the Hibbertia glaberscens MS on Bankstown Airport for research and long term seed banking.

“The research will be conducted by a team from Royal Botanic Gardens, Sydney and Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew and will focus on the germination process of the seed collected, and the conditions required to activate this process such as temperature, moisture, light exposure and other conditions.

“The seeds will be divided between the NSW Seed Bank at Mount Annan Botanic Gardens and the Royal Botanic Gardens collection in London. At the seed banks some of the seed will be frozen and stored in long term facilities both here and in the UK, in the event a disaster threatens to eliminate the species. It is expected the seeds stored in the long term seed bank will last anywhere up to a couple of hundred years.

This is a joint project across the Commonwealth with Australia providing a quarter of the seed for the research and seed banking program.

“It is great the Airport is able to be a part of this important future environmental project for the protection of our ecological future,” concluded Ms Lammerts.

High resolution available upon request
Media Information: Meredith Laverty 0414-523-060

About The Millennium Seed Bank Project
The Millennium Seed Bank Project is an international conservation project coordinated by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Launched in the year 2000 and housed in the Wellcome Trust Millennium Building situated in the grounds of Wakehurst Place West Sussex, its purpose is to provide an "insurance policy" against the extinction of plants in the wild by storing seeds for future use. The storage facilities consist of large underground frozen vaults preserving the world's largest collection of seeds



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