Working with our network of partners across more than 95 countries, we have successfully banked over 13% of the world's wild plant species. We target plants and regions most at risk from climate change and the ever-increasing impact of human activities, such as the clearing of primary vegetation, over-exploitation and climate change.
By 2020, Kew's Millennium Seed Bank will be building upon its current global partnership to save 25% of the world’s species (around 75,000 species). Our collection programmes prioritise plant species from mountain, dryland, coastal and island environments. Research shows that these ecosystems are the most vulnerable to climate change.
More importantly, we will put these species to use in developing innovative, plant-based solutions to the major environmental challenges that we all face, such as food security, water scarcity, deforestation, energy and climate change.
In the future, new plant species will need to be used and new crop varieties will need to be developed. These will include drought resistant crop and forage species that sustain the world’s poorest communities, salt-tolerant and desert pioneer species that combat desertification, and photosynthetically efficient and energy-rich plants with potential as biofuels.