A New Direction?
June 24, 2013 at 10:52 am #22093
I would like to propose a new focus that could result in the building of a large, multi-purpose seastead in the next 2-4 years. Thereafter, more could be built as there would be a working design and ample funds to build them.
It seems apropos to be considering a new focus at the five year anniversary of the Seasteading Institute. When it was first established, excitement was high about this new concept called seasteading. There were high hopes that shortly – within 2-3 years at the very least – there would be seasteads roaming the oceans demonstrating to the world a new way of living. In the five years since, there indeed has been progress, but not as much as we had all hoped.
To reignite that initial wild enthusiasm for seasteading, nothing less than the launching of an actual, working seastead in the immediate future will do. Otherwise, the idea is in danger of perishing, never having borne fruit. For those of us who passionately want to see and LIVE on a seastead within our lifetimes that would be an immense tragedy. So, I’m proposing that a new focus be set as the current one is not producing the desired results.
The new focus I propose consists of a number of different aspects. The first is that it would be immeasurably easier to cater to the needs of a people already at sea than to try and entice people on land to go out to sea. Second, a multi-purpose seastead would be more achievable as the costs of the unit could be spread out amoung the business occupants reducing the financial burden for each. Third, established businesses with the resources and operational focus on the marine environment would be better business occupants on the seastead than new, unproven startups. Or, additionally, established successful businesses on land which could successfully be duplicated on the seastead. Fourth, a seastead must be the only option that can be used. Fifth and finally, the seastead concept must be targeted at an industry with ample financial resources and is constantly using experimental structures and equipment in it’s operations.
Regarding the latter, this should be fairly obvious as to which industry it would be – the oil industries deep ocean exploration/extraction operations in the Gulf of Mexico. It occurred to me while thinking about the history of mineral exploitation/extraction around the world that in almost every case a town was established – whether by the company exploiting the resource or spontaneously – near the resource. That occurred on land regularly, but not at sea. What occurred at sea could be called instead work camps which on land were the initial phase of exploiting a resource. The oil industry, given its decades of deep ocean drilling is still in the early stages of resource extraction as it relates to its workers. The reason for this obviously is that the technology wasn’t available to do otherwise. However, that is no longer the case. We have the technology and it is called seasteading.
Targeting the deep ocean exploration/extraction operations of the oil industry opens up a number of opportunities. Lets look at the opportunity first from a business perspective. The ocean oil rig workers are ALREADY AT SEA. Eventhough they enjoy a fairly high income, they do so in exchange for very uncomfortable living conditions and constant danger. If given a choice which they don’t have at present, most I’m sure, would appreciate more comfortable living conditions and increased privacy. Also, there is very limited entertainment opportunities on board which again, given the opportunity, they would prefer greater choices. But the point is if thery were living on a seastead they could enjoy the above and more. Some of the businesses that could suitably be on a seastead that would cater to their welfare and safety would be a condo/hotel/restaurant/sports bar/lounge, a fitness/sports center, a gentleman’s club and an emergency response center. Regarding the latter, oil companies operating in US waters are now mandated by law to have emergency response teams on standby at all times in case of an oil spill. Rather than have these on land which, in some cases, would take not hours but days to reach some of the oil rigs in the Gulf, having the teams on a seastead would dramatically reduce that response time. This is something only a well-configured seastead can be used for.
The choice of a condo/hotel is because of the oil workers schedules. Typically, they work 2-3 weeks straight then have off the same amount of time. A condo/hotel would provide them with the amenities of a hotel while working and the possiblities of rental income when away. Their units could be rented out to another business that would be appropriate on a seastead – a medical center. Or, to be more precise, a medical/rehab center.
The medical/rehab center could accept patients from the US at greatly reduced prices than what they would otherwise pay. But not only would the US market be available to it, but also patients from Central and South America and the Carribbean. And, if the oil workers ever needed it, having a medical/rehab center there would be a definite plus.
Another business which would benefit the oil workers indirectly would be a distribution center. The supply companies to the oil rigs are all located on land necessitating transporting everything over significant distances. This gets more and more costly the further out the rigs are. However, with a distribution center on a seastead,, their costs should be greatly reduced. Additionally, they are also responsible for disposal of the trash from the rigs. A recycling/resource recovery center on the seastead would further reduce their costs. All the these businesses would form the anchor businesses for the seastead. Catering to these and individuals on the seastead would be smaller businesses. Their owners, of course, would add to the population of the seastead.
This new focus would provide finanical opportunities as well. The hardest part to building a seastead is obtaining financing. Fortunately, the oil companies have venture capital funds. If the seastead can be shown to be a critical component to their deep ocean operations, it should not be that difficult to have them initially or totally finance it. Additionally, financing through equity partnerships could be arranged with the anchor businesses already mentinoned.
This, I feel, should be the new focus of our seasteading efforts. The question now is; what would be the pro’s and con’s of this proposed new focuse? Your thoughts?June 24, 2013 at 10:29 pm #22096
Are you buying? Everyone throws out ideas that take million$ to make happen, so nothing gets done.
I built one boat that was registered and numbered, plans for the 2nd boat got scuttled along with some materials, and i am working on the 3rd boat. All with very very little money, in hostile conditions. What are you doing? Did you know a accommodation oil-rig platform for workers can cost as much as one million per worker? You know they get evacuated when hurricanes approach, even if new and anchored? Buying onto Blueseed is pricey as heck, but talk is cheap.June 25, 2013 at 4:06 pm #22097
At some point in time we were talking here about two approaches in achieving the goals of seasteading: “the high road seasteading”, meaning designing and building a massive seastead (1000+ seasteaders on board) that will operate directly on the high seas and will cost a lot ($500 million or more) or “the low road seasteading”, meaning building a small seastead (20-50 seasteaders on board) that will first operate in the territorial (coastal) water of a given nation as a “seasteading lab” and would cost less than, lets say, $150k – $300k.
Soooooo,… I think that the question was and still is, “WHICH seastead are you “buying”? Also, you have to keep in mind that TSI does not want to build and/or operate a seastead, unless they changed their mind and I am not aware of that factJune 25, 2013 at 8:43 pm #22098
There’s no change to TSI being just a facilitator of seasteading
In the “Comprehensive Seasteading Project” part of the new TSI newsletter
you’ll see that they say “Once we make it to the end of Phase I of this comprehensive study, we hope to spin off a collaboration with real estate developers and investors to actualize the resulting plan.”June 26, 2013 at 9:43 am #22099
Thanks all for your responses. Regarding the cost, the fact that there are such companies that offer work accommodation barges indicates that there is a market for this notwithstanding the costs. Also, addressing the issues of the environment is more of a design issue that require further study. However, I will say that I have a design in mind that would have a protected harbor. If you have a seastead or even boat that you would like to dock at the marina of the seastead and stay as a live aboard, it should not be a problem. Doing so at a large seastead as I have in mind would give you access to everything it has to offer and the possibility of obtaining a job. And, if for some reason you no longer wished to stay there, you would be free to leave.
As to the Seasteading Institute building this, no, I don’t expect that. They, of course, could facilitate its establishment by conducting studies and doing research. For example, the current survey they are conducting is targeted at “financially secure” individuals. What if they were to survey the oil rig workers in the Gulf instead to see what they would like?June 26, 2013 at 10:12 am #22100
Just a followup in case I didn’t make it clear enough in my recent post, the seastead I have in mind would be on the open ocean of the Gulf and house 1000+ residents.June 26, 2013 at 3:13 pm #22101
For me, seasteading is a new different idea. To me seasteading would be living at the see a new, a different way.
It is not necessary the expansion of the regular way of life of jobs and investment.
It is interesting to me, to read other opinions, and I appreciate communications of sentiments.
The basic promise of the seastead for me is autonomy. All land are owned and regulated by some governmental
authority. Even the international seabed is claimed by the ISA (International Seabed Authority). And the ISA
proposes laws and regulations how seabed mining can be done. The water columns out site of EEZ is the least
claimed. There are international disagreements between countries about the seabed out side of EEZ. The USA
has not signed ISA agreement. So for US citizens; deep sea mining out side any EEZ is a lawful activity by US laws.
I do not think so much about the mining, but the anchoring. So, the technical details for maximum sovereignty.
And why sovereignty? Basic philosophical question. Some people do not value sovereignty.
Wow, back to reality: I do not think anyone is going to finance my seastead, or if someone would, it would not be
a sovereign seastead. “The one who pays the piper, calls the tune.”June 26, 2013 at 3:22 pm #22102
Well, if you have the money to build a 1000+ residents seastead, go for it. I would go for 100 max first and see how it works.
I’d be very careful locating a seastead in the Gulf since there is nowhere to run from a hurricane. Remember Katrina,….June 28, 2013 at 1:50 am #22108
The seastead would be a group of people too. 1000, or 100, or 10, there would have to be some basic agreements about how to get along
with each other. I think this is called culture. So there would be an inside culture.
And how does the group deal with individuals who do not follow rules, such as harmful to other members of the group?
In my opinion, these would all have to be on a common denominator. The group would form a small society, as always. This hapens
all the time, and cities, and town are different, just as families, or housing associations.
It seems to me, that the social aspects of the community of seasteading would play a big determining factor to the physical nature
and the design of the structure of the floating thing.
I saw many pictures of designs of a one piece elaborate structure. These would probably be expensive. Owning a large structure
collectively, would require financial commitment from each member. Probably only few wanna-be seasteaders have that much money.
I probably do not have that much money.
An other option, I see, is boat docking. Common areas would be on a large floating structure. This floating structure would have docking
sites. Boats could be docked. Boats could serve as individual living space. Just like a marina. I might even have enough money to
buy a bigger boat. For me, the marina style would work better. And it is already working for me. Just the marina is not a floating one.
I know, it works for others too.July 3, 2013 at 9:53 pm #22115
i think the new direction we should explore is co-operating with current sea-steaders, known as liveaboards and cruisers.
The first liveaboard I know of was Harry Pidgeon, and since then it’s been an ever expanding amount of people participating in both circumnavigating and living aboard their boats.
in general liveaboards have very little technology on their boats, potentially even lacking electricity, due to difficulty of maintaining electric systems in salty atmosphere. Also they have relatively small boats, approaching the limit of what Nasa deems sufficient, about 10m^3 per person.
In terms of the mobile move your house if you don’t like how it’s done locally, it’s not only boats, but also trailers that can do so, with the tiny-house movement it’s quite viable to have dynamic-residential on both land and sea. Of course, much like with boats, though not to as an extreme extent trailer and tiny homes, tend to be quite small, with few utilities.
A basic liveaboard boat for a couple or small family (<32ft LOA) can be purchased under 10k.
This is a market that is so saturated few manufacturers can profit making boats in that size.
Boating magazines are chalk full of huge boats, as much as 65′ LOA, costing hundreds of thousands,
sometimes over a million. Noteably the more expensive a boat, the more expensive it is to maintain.
I think before we start thinking about making seasteads that float in the middle of an ocean,
we should make plans for utilizing some of the many uninhabited islands in the oceans.
Typically the problem with uninhabited islands is lack of fresh water,
so figuring out a means of producing copious fresh water is necessary,
quite-obviously it would have to be without electricity, as that would quickly break surrounded by ocean as it is.
So some kind of simple passive distillation system would have to be used.
and then can start building some kind of resort for people to visit,
potentially with food sources and product manufacturing to make it self-sufficient.
Many of these islands are only loosely held by their governments,
so it would be possible to get independence once a population is established.
much as many pacific islands have in post-colonial times achieed autonomous status.July 4, 2013 at 9:14 am #22118
The island idea is not good because all dry land is claimed by a particular government.
There are 12 nautical miles territorial waters around each island, and another 12 contiguous zone and a 200 nm EEZ.
It is all good and nice until a navy shows up.
NASA research of m3 per persons are very useful. There are probably other NASA research too, but to get them is
Small boats and large boats are the idea, I think.
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