French Polynesia Could Be the Site of the World’s First Floating City
The Seasteading Institute is one step closer to building the world’s first floating city after signing an agreement with the government of French Polynesia.
Concerned about both climate change and what it considers oppressive government regulation, the Seasteading Institute is dedicated to researching, funding, and eventually building independent communities on the sea. Literally on it, as in floating.
After five years of location scouting, the institute reached an agreement with French Polynesia, and hopes to begin construction of this new floating city by 2019.
Before that, though, they need a battery of economic and environmental impact studies, and the legal and governing frameworks for their planned community need to be sorted out.
The institute’s executive director, Randolph Hencken, described finding a host nation as “a significant milestone,” since sheltered waters are affordable to build on and convenient for climate refugees fleeing rising tides and other looming environmental dangers.
“So much of the world—places like Kiribati and many of the islands of French Polynesia—are threatened by rising sea levels,” Hencken said. “We are planning to spin off a new industry of floating islands that will allow people to stay tethered to their sovereignty as opposed to having to flee to other countries.”
Below, watch Hencken’s keynote speech from the 2016 Prototyping the Future Conference, which covers this subject in greater detail.