• The $50-million Floating Island Project is a pilot program in partnership with the government of French Polynesia 
  • Bankrolled by PayPal founder Peter Thiel, the project will be built off the island of Tahiti

The government of French Polynesia is supporting a pilot program that aims to develop an off-shore independent floating island by 2020.

Bankrolled by PayPal billionaire founder Peter Thiel, the $50-million Floating Island Project will operate outside government regulations and will use its own ‘Varyon’ cryptocurrency.

According to the plan, by 2022, between 250 to 300 people could be floating off the coast of Tahiti.

In an interview with CNBC, Nathalie Mezza-Garcia – a political scientist and researcher for the Floating Island Project – spoke about the project’s goals to create hundreds of floating island-nations, where people could live by whatever rules they so please.

Other goals include: housing refugees who are displaced as climate change gives rise to higher sea levels, enriching the poor, curing the sick, feeding the hungry, living in balance with nature, and powering the world.

“If you don’t want to live under a particular government, people will be able to just take their house and float away to another island,” Mezza-Garcia said.

The project is being developed by ‘a diverse global team of marine biologists, nautical engineers, aquaculture farmers, maritime attorneys, medical researchers, security personnel, investors, environmentalists, and artists’ called the Seasteading Institute. The cryptocurrency side of the venture is being run by Blue Frontiers Ltd.