By Colin Khoury
We are happy to announce the launch of the Crop Wild Relatives and Climate Change website. The new site is dedicated to compiling and providing information on the taxonomy, distribution, conservation status and breeding potential of the wild relatives of major crops. Developed under the project “Adapting Agriculture to Climate Change: Collecting, Protecting, and Preparing Crop Wild Relatives” and building upon its activities, this website is intended to become a lasting data repository. The project is led by the Global Crop Diversity Trust in association with the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, supported by the Government of Norway. It focuses on the wild species in the genepools of 26 crops of major importance to food security that fall under the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture. The project is being implemented through partnerships with national and international crop conservation and use programs, universities and other research institutions. In the future the program will collect wild relatives not yet available from genebanks, conserve them and through prebreeding and evaluation, prepare materials for use by plant breeders and farmers for adapting crops to climate change.
The website will eventually provide a series of connected information resources that are novel in their global scope. The Crop Wild Rrelatives (CWR) Inventory section (The Harlan and Wet Crop Wild Relative Inventory) allows users to search compiled information on the taxonomy and relationships between major crops and their wild relatives. The Conservation Gaps section will provide an interactive map displaying the distribution and ex situ conservation status of the CWR, globally. The Collecting and Conservation section will give information on progress with the collecting and safeguarding of CWR as the Project proceeds, and will provide additional information on established collecting and ex situ conservation practices. Finally, the CWR Use section will provide information related to breeding with the wild relatives of crops, largely gathered through consultations with breeders and expert researchers worldwide.
Re-posted from the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), Decision and Policy Analysis blog. Read to the original blog post here. To receive more updates and research news on the topic adaptation to agriculture under climate change follow us on Facebook, and on Twitter @Cgiarclimate.