The Seasteading Institute, founded by grandson of Nobel prize-winning economist Milton Friedman, Patri Friedman, in San Francisco while at Google and initially funded by Peter Thiel.
Chad Elwartowski (Michigan bitcoin trader) & Supranee Thepdet (aka Nadia Summergirl from Thailand) built a floating house off of Phuket in Thailand, but it was found to be a threat to Thai sovereignty because they were declaring it an autonomous region 12 miles from shore. They fled to Panama to start Ocean Builders funded by a retired German aerospace engineer named Rüdiger Koch.
Joe Quirk author of Seasteading (2017)-Blue Frontiers failed company with Marc Collins Chen, former minister of tourism of Fr. Polynesia, proposal designed by Blue21.
Collins Chen-NY-based Oceanix City, designed by Bjarke Ingels, the Danish Silicon Valley architect.
Government of French Polynesia Signs Agreement with Seasteaders for Floating Island Project Announcements | January 17, 2017 “On January 13, Mr. Jean Christophe Bouissou, Minister of Housing and the government’s official spokesperson, arrived in San Francisco to sign the agreement on behalf of President Edouard Fritch in the company of Silicon Valley luminaries, members of the press, and supporters of The Seasteading Institute. President Fritch addressed the group from French Polynesia by video call. “The Memorandum of Understanding I’m sure will greatly help and facilitate our future cooperation on this innovative project,” he said. “Our seasteading collaboration with French Polynesia was initiated by the Tahitians themselves and will bring jobs, economic growth, and environmental resiliency to the region,” said Randolph Hencken, Executive Director of the Seasteading Institute. “Signing the MOU with French Polynesia is an important first step, and a huge milestone for seasteading.” In September, President Fritch invited an international delegation from The Seasteading Institute to examine several potential sites near the French Polynesian islands of Tahiti, Tupai, and Raiatea. The team met personally with Mr. Teva Rohfristch, Minister for Economic Recovery, the Blue Economy, and Digital Policy, Mme. Sylviane Terooatea, Mayor of Raiatea, and Mr. Gaston Tong Sang, former president and Mayor of Bora Bora and Tupai.
Seasteading—a Vanity Project for the Rich or the Future of Humanity? Beloved by Silicon Valley tycoons and tyranny-fearing libertarians, are cities atop the waves Earth’s next frontier? The Guardian June 24, 2020 Oliver Wainwright
“In a founding statement, they described its goal as being “to establish permanent, autonomous ocean communities to enable experimentation and innovation with diverse social, political, and legal systems”. Thiel was nothing if not confident: “The nature of government is about to change at a very fundamental level,” he proclaimed. “When you’re not sure which virus is more contagious,” says the slogan of a recent meme made by Americans for Liberty, shared on Elwartowski’s Facebook page. “Covid-19, or those fine with complete government control.” Thiel’s donations soon dried up, and Friedman’s plans never got much further than launching Ephemerisle – a waterborne version of the Burning Man festival, staged in the Sacramento River delta near San Francisco, where rival floating pontoons compete for the attention of soggy partygoers. He has since moved his focus away from the water, recently launching a company to develop experimental cities on dry land instead. But the Seasteading Institute continues without him, headed by author and self-appointed “seavangelist”, Joe Quirk. “There wasn’t a perfect alignment of interests,” says Marc Collins Chen, former minister of tourism of French Polynesia, who co-founded the company Blue Frontiers with Quirk to realise the project. “The government was looking for something to address sea level rise and environmental degradation, whereas the Seasteading Institute was more about autonomy.” As Collins Chen puts it: “It’s very difficult to ask for government support when your narrative is that you want to get rid of politicians.” In retrospect, Bell agrees: “They already had a beautiful paradise in French Polynesia. The local community wasn’t very enthusiastic about the project, and I get it. They didn’t need strangers coming in and ruining their view.” Remarkably, their [Collins Chen’s Oceanix City] sci-fi scheme has won the support of the United Nations’ sustainable development arm, UN-Habitat, which hosted a round table discussion for the project in April 2019. As global heating accelerates, sea levels rise and more people crowd into urban slums, “floating cities is one of the possible solutions,” said UN-Habitat’s executive director, Maimunah Mohd Sharif.