By Harry Pettit, DailyMail.com, November 13, 2017
The world’s first floating nation is set to appear in the Pacific Ocean off the island of Tahiti in 2020.
A handful of hotels, homes, offices, restaurants and more will be built in the next few years by the nonprofit Seasteading Institute, which hopes to ‘liberate humanity from politicians’.
The radical plans, bankrolled by PayPal founder Peter Thiel, could see the creation of an independent nation that will float in international waters and operate within its own laws.
In a new interview, Joe Quirk, president of the Seasteading Institute, said he wants to see ‘thousands’ of rogue floating cities by 2050, each of them ‘offering different ways of governance’.
‘Governments just don’t get better,’ Mr Quirk told the New York Times.
‘They’re stuck in previous centuries. That’s because land incentives a violent monopoly to control it.’
The first island is being funded by a coin offering, a new concept gaining popularity in Silicon Valley in which money is ‘crowd sourced’ by creating and selling a virtual currency.
The non-profit hopes to raise around $60 million by 2020 to build a dozen buildings.
The structures will feature ‘green roofs’ covered with vegetation and construction will use local bamboo, coconut fibre, wood and recycled metal and plastic.
First revealed in January, the plans have been approved by the French Polynesian government, which is now creating a special economic zone so the floating nation can operate under its own trade laws.
The tiny nation, a collection of 118 islands in the southern Pacific with a population just over 200,000, has granted the Seasteading Institute 100 acres of beachfront to operate from.
French Polynesia is interested in the project as the area is at risk from rising sea levels.
It may seem like an ambitious plan, but the group believes semi-independent cities would be the perfect place to try new modes of government and agricultural methods.
Mr Quirk and his team have now started a new company, Blue Frontiers, which will build and operate the floating islands in French Polynesia.
He said he was inspired to build a floating city, known as seasteading, when he went to the US festival Burning Man 2011.
The enormous event, which attracts 70,000 people every year, could provide a model for a new society where ‘rules don’t observe their usual parameters’, he said.
‘If you could have a floating city, it would essentially be a start-up country,’ Mr Quirk said.