User:Free City of Seacastle

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Free City of Seacastle
Flag of Seacastle
Flag
Coat of arms of Seacastle
Coat of arms
Motto: "Progress • Industry • Humanity"
Anthem: "Song of Seacastle"
Proposed seasteading location
Proposed seasteading location
Map of the floating structures of Seacastle designed by Dutch architect Koen Olthuis
Map of the floating structures of Seacastle designed by Dutch architect Koen Olthuis
StatusFloating city-state project
CapitalSeacastle (city-state)
Government HQSeacastle Central
(de jure)
York, United Kingdom
(de facto)
Official languages • Seacastlian English
 • Sign Language
Ethnic groupsNo official statistics
DemonymSeacastlian
GovernmentUnitary parliamentary republic with an executive lord mayoralty
L. Gaige Walker (acting)
Allistier Whittaker
Daphne McNally
Aaron Clark
LegislatureAssembly
Establishment
• Declared
26 March 2020
Area
• Total
2.90 km2 (1.12 sq mi)
Population
• Citizenship estimate
59
CurrencyEuro () (EUR)
Time zone(UTC+0)
• Summer (DST)
 (UTC+1)
Date formatdd-mm-yyyy
Drives on theleft
Calling code+44
Internet TLD.sc
.eu
Website
N/A

Seacastle, officially the Free City of Seacastle, is a self-proclaimed sovereign city-state claiming a parcel of water in the North Sea, about 180 kilometres from the coast of Scarborough, on Dogger Bank, where it hoped to build floating structures to create a seasteading city. It is commonly referred to as a micronation by external observers. Its nearest neighour is the United Kingdom to the west and southwest, with further neighbours including the Nordic countries to the east and northeast. Seacastle has been nicknamed as the "New Venice" and/or the "Venice of the North", attributed by the design proposal of floating structures which creates a large number of canals throughout the city. The city-state is a unitary, parliamentary republic with an executive lord mayoralty. The Lord Mayor is both the head of state and head of government, who heads the Assembly which serves as the municipal and central legislature.

The city-state was established as a provisional government on 26 March 2020, headquartered in York, to create a sustainable eco-friendly seasteading project-nation in the North Sea in response to climate change, such as global warming. The constitution soon was adopted following the establishment, in which the city-state was named "Seacastle", a republic with a lord mayor as head of state and head of government.

Seacastle is a multicultural society encompassing a wide variety of cultures, languages, and religions. It is considered to be one of the most economically and socially developed micronations in the world. Seacastlians enjoy a high standard of living and the city-state ranks highly in some metrics of national performance, including education, health care, protection of civil liberties, democratic governance, LGBT equality, prosperity, and human development. Nevertheless, it ranks as having the lowest perceived level of corruption in the world. The city-state is one of the few in world never to have had a coup d'état, and regular elections have been held since the national foundation.

Etymology

History

Prehistory

North Sea has provided waterway access for commerce and conquest. Many areas have access to the North Sea because of its long coastline and the European rivers that empty into it.[1] The British Isles had been protected from invasion by the North Sea waters[1] until the Roman conquest of Britain in 43 CE. The Romans established organised ports, which increased shipping, and began sustained trade.[2] When the Romans abandoned Britain in 410, the Germanic Angles, Saxons, and Jutes began the next great migration across the North Sea during the Migration Period. They made successive invasions of the island.[3]

The Viking Age began in 793 with the attack on Lindisfarne; for the next quarter-millennium the Vikings ruled the North Sea. In their superior longships, they raided, traded, and established colonies and outposts along the coasts of the sea. From the Middle Ages through the 15th century, the northern European coastal ports exported domestic goods, dyes, linen, salt, metal goods and wine. The Scandinavian and Baltic areas shipped grain, fish, naval necessities, and timber. In turn the North Sea countries imported high-grade cloths, spices, and fruits from the Mediterranean region.[4] Commerce during this era was mainly conducted by maritime trade due to underdeveloped roadways.[4]

In the 13th century the Hanseatic League, though centred on the Baltic Sea, started to control most of the trade through important members and outposts on the North Sea.[5] The League lost its dominance in the 16th century, as neighbouring states took control of former Hanseatic cities and outposts. Their internal conflict prevented effective cooperation and defence.[6] As the League lost control of its maritime cities, new trade routes emerged that provided Europe with Asian, American, and African goods.[7][8]

The 17th century Dutch Golden Age during which Dutch herring, cod and whale fisheries reached an all time high[4] saw Dutch power at its zenith.[9][10] Important overseas colonies, a vast merchant marine, powerful navy and large profits made the Dutch the main challengers to an ambitious England. This rivalry led to the first three Anglo-Dutch Wars between 1652 and 1673, which ended with Dutch victories.[10] After the Glorious Revolution in 1688, the Dutch prince William ascended to the English throne. With unified leadership, commercial, military, and political power began to shift from Amsterdam to London.[11] The British did not face a challenge to their dominance of the North Sea until the 20th century.[12]

German cruiser SMS Blücher sinks in the Battle of Dogger Bank on 25 January 1915.

Tensions in the North Sea were again heightened in 1904 by the Dogger Bank incident. During the Russo-Japanese War, several ships of the Russian Baltic Fleet, which was on its way to the Far East, mistook British fishing boats for Japanese ships and fired on them, and then upon each other, near the Dogger Bank, nearly causing Britain to enter the war on the side of Japan.

During the First World War, Great Britain's Grand Fleet and Germany's Kaiserliche Marine faced each other in the North Sea,[13] which became the main theatre of the war for surface action.[13] Britain's larger fleet and North Sea Mine Barrage were able to establish an effective blockade for most of the war, which restricted the Central Powers' access to many crucial resources.[14] Major battles included the Battle of Heligoland Bight,[15] the Battle of the Dogger Bank,[16] and the w:Battle of Jutland.[16] World War I also brought the first extensive use of submarine warfare, and a number of submarine actions occurred in the North Sea.[17]

The Second World War also saw action in the North Sea,[18] though it was restricted more to aircraft reconnaissance, and action by fighter/bomber aircraft, submarines, and smaller vessels such as minesweepers and torpedo boats.[19]

In the aftermath of the war, hundreds of thousands of tons of chemical weapons were disposed of by being dumped in the North Sea.[20]

After the war, the North Sea lost much of its military significance because it is bordered only by NATO member-states. However, it gained significant economic importance in the 1960s as the states around the North Sea began full-scale exploitation of its oil and gas resources.[21] The North Sea continues to be an active trade route.[22]

Free City of Seacastle

Government and politics

The Free City of Seacastle has a unique political status of a parliamentary republic with an executive lord mayoralty. It is a representative democracy with universal suffrage. It has an unusual system of governance for a sovereign country as the city-state is governed at a municipal and central level. The Constitution of Seacastle, the supreme law of Seacastle, was adopted on 1 April 2020, few days after the national establishment. The Lord Mayor, currently L. Gaige Walker, who heads the 19-member unicameral Assembly, is both head of state and head of government and is dependent on the Assembly's confidence to remain the Lord Mayor. The National Council is elected every four years. The Assembly elects the Lord Mayor from its members, and the Lord Mayor appoints a cabinet of five to six members.

The government is composed of three branches:

  • Cabinet: The Lord Mayor is responsible for enforcing national law, and appoints Cabinet members. Acting with the Cabinet, the Lord Mayor can propose new bills, issue subordinate legislation, and has authority to dissolve the legislature. In states of emergency or public danger, the Lord Mayor is further empowered to enact any regulation necessary to restore public order.
  • Legislature: The unicameral Assembly enacts national law, approves budgets, and has the power to impeach a sitting Lord Mayor.
  • Judiciary: The Supreme Court, Court of Appeal and lower courts interpret laws and overturn those inconsistent with the constitution. Judges are appointed by the Lord Mayor on the advice of a recommendation commission.

The cabinet is traditionally drawn from members of the Lord Mayor's party or coalition and from the Assembly, which the cabinet being responsible to. The Lord Mayor and the Cabinet may be removed by the Assembly by a motion of no confidence if necessary. A general election must be called no later than four years after the previous election. Almost all general elections since the establishment of the city-state were held under the first-past-the-post voting system.

On the municipal level, the government provides a full range of services including tax billing, libraries, social services, social housing, processing planning applications, licensing, economic development, waste collection and disposal, police and fire, hospitals and paramedics, and it also has an education authority.

Seacastle has a common law legal system with a written constitution that provides for a parliamentary democracy. The court system consists of the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeal, the High Court and the Circuit Court, all of which apply the Law of Seacastle and hear both civil and criminal matters. Trials for serious offences must usually be held before a jury. The High Court, Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court have authority, by means of judicial review, to determine the compatibility of laws and activities of other institutions of the state with the constitution and the law. Except in exceptional circumstances, court hearings must occur in public.

Political parties

The Party of Seacastle, the Liberal Party and the Greens have, in modern times, been considered the city-state's three major political parties, representing Seacastle's traditions of socialism, liberalism and green politics, respectively.

Party Name Logo Short name Leader Ideology Position Colors Seats
Assembly
Party of Seacastle Party of Seacastle logo.png The Party POS Joe Budd Centre-left Red
9 / 19
Liberal Party Seacastle Liberal Party logo.png Liberal SLP Nick McElroy Centre to centre-left Amber
7 / 19
Green Party Green Party of Seacastle logo.png Green GPS Samantha O'Hara Left-wing Green
2 / 19
Conservative Party Seacastle Conservative Party logo.png Conservative SCP Ian Hartnell Right-wing Blue
1 / 19

Police and security

Seacastle has no armed forces, though there is a small police force under government control. The Free City of Seacastle Police is the state's civilian police force. The force is responsible for all aspects of civil policing, both in terms of territory and infrastructure. It is headed by the Garda Commissioner, who is appointed by the Government. Most uniformed members do not carry firearms. Standard policing is traditionally carried out by uniformed officers equipped only with a baton and pepper spray.

Administrative divisions

While the small physical size of the city-state does not qualify the creation of national subdivisions in the form of provinces, states, and other national political divisions found in larger countries, the city has nonetheless been administratively subdivided in various ways throughout its history for the purpose of local administration and urban planning.

Seacastle is made up of nine wards. They can be described as electoral/political divisions; ceremonial, geographic and administrative entities; sub-divisions of the city-state. Inspired by the City of London's ceremonial customs, each wards have beadles, with most having just one, but the larger wards two or three. This is an elected office that is largely ceremonial, in that they accompany their Assembly representatives on the eight high ceremonial occasions in the City's civic calendar and in attending to call to order the wardmote, an annual meeting in each ward of electors, representatives and officials.

The wards of Seacastle are the main urban planning and census divisions of the city-state delineated by the Seacastle Urban Redevelopment Authority. A development guide plan is then drawn up for each ward, providing for detailed planning guidelines for every individual plot of land throughout the city. Since the implementation of these boundaries, other governmental secretaries and departments have also increasingly adopted these boundaries for their administrative purposes. The Free City of Seacastle Police's (FCSP) neighbourhood police centres have jurisdiction boundaries based on ward boundaries.

There are also ward clubs, which are similar to residents' associations, but because these have membership open to those without an electoral qualification in the ward they have essentially become social clubs as part of the City's general civic social life along with the guilds, associations and liveries. Confusingly, there is also a 'United Wards Club' which was formed before many of the others as a joint association and is now additional to them.

In general elections, each ward elects a representative to the city-state's Assembly, who represent local communities throughout the city, are responsible for scrutinising the Cabinet's decisions, setting the budget, and policy framework of the city-state.

Wards

For general elections the city-state is divided into nine wards, which in alphabetical order are:

  1.      Beckgate
  2.      Bevan
  3.      Seacastle Central
  4.      Seacastle East
  5.      Seacastle North
  1.      Seacastle South
  2.      Seacastle West
  3.      Telgate
  4.      Wolvergate

Foreign relations

The foreign relations of Seacastle are handled by the Secretary for Foreign Affairs. Since establishment proclaimed in 2020, the foreign policy has been complicated due to lack of recognition in the international community. However, the city-state participates in inter-micronational organisations and maintains diplomatic relations with entities that are non-UN member-states.

Despite having no armed forces, Seacastle's foreign policy is aimed at maintaining security in the North Sea. An underlying principle is political and economic stability in the region. Its foreign policy is officially based on the principle of neutrality and maintaining peaceful relations with all countries, regardless of their political system. The government attaches a high priority to the security and stability of the North Sea, and seeks to further recognition with other countries in the region. A strong tenet of Seacastle's policy is national sovereignty and the right of a country to control its domestic affairs.

Countries with diplomatic relations with the Free City of Seacastle

Countries with informal relations with the Free City of Seacastle

Countries recognised by the Free City of Seacastle; no diplomatic relations

Geography

Outline (in red) of the Dogger Bank, the proposed seasteading location of Seacastle

Located in the North Sea, the Free City of Seacastle claims a parcel of water on Dogger Bank, about 180 kilometres from the coast of Scarborough, where it hoped to build floating structures to create a seasteading city. The bank extends over about 17,600 square kilometres (6,800 sq mi), and is about 260 by 100 kilometres (160 by 60 mi) in extent, which reserves room for the floating seasteading project to expand if necessary. The Dogger Bank, a vast moraine, or accumulation of unconsolidated glacial debris, rises to a mere 15 to 30 m (50 to 100 ft) below the surface. This feature has produced the finest fishing location of the North Sea. It gives its name to the Dogger sea area used in the BBC Radio 4 Shipping Forecast. Several shipwrecks lie on the bank. The area has been identified as an oceanic environment that exhibits high primary productivity throughout the year in the form of phytoplankton. As such, it has been proposed by various groups to designate the area a Marine Nature Reserve.

Floating city project

Bird's-eye view design of the floating structures of Seacastle by Dutch architect Koen Olthuis

Inspired by the Seasteading Institute, the Free City of Seacastle hoped to build floating structures to create a sustainable eco-friendly seasteading city-state in the North Sea in response to climate change, such as global warming. The floating structures designs are based around interlocking modules made of reinforced concrete anchored on the underwater shoal of Dogger Bank, a composite material in which concrete's relatively low tensile strength and ductility are counteracted by the inclusion of reinforcement having higher tensile strength or ductility. The reinforcement is usually, though not necessarily, steel reinforcing bars (rebar) and is usually embedded passively in the concrete before the concrete sets. Reinforced concrete is often used for floating docks, oil platforms, dams, and other marine structures.

Reinforcing schemes are generally designed to resist tensile stresses in particular regions of the concrete that might cause unacceptable cracking and/or structural failure. Modern reinforced concrete can contain varied reinforcing materials made of steel, polymers or alternate composite material in conjunction with rebar or not. Reinforced concrete may also be permanently stressed (concrete in compression, reinforcement in tension), so as to improve the behaviour of the final structure under working loads. Each floating structure needs a strong, ductile and durable construction the reinforcement needs to have the following properties at least:

  • High relative strength
  • High toleration of tensile strain
  • Good bond to the concrete, irrespective of pH, moisture, and similar factors
  • Thermal compatibility, not causing unacceptable stresses (such as expansion or contraction) in response to changing temperatures.
  • Durability in the concrete environment, irrespective of corrosion or sustained stress for example.

Seacastle has been nicknamed as the "New Venice" and/or the "Venice of the North", attributed by the design proposal of floating structures which creates a large number of rivers and canals throughout the city.

Architecture and greening policy

The architecture of Seacastle is based on a vibrant blend of earth toned traditional, modern and sustainable architectures, which seeks to minimise the negative environmental impact of buildings by efficiency and moderation in the use of materials, energy, and development space and the ecosystem at large. Seacastle's architecture uses a conscious approach to energy and ecological conservation in the design of the built environment. The idea is to ensure that our use of presently available resources does not end up having detrimental effects to our collective well-being or making it impossible to obtain resources for other applications in the long run.

Every building with a flat roof in Seacastle is required to have a roof garden. Besides the decorative benefit, roof plantings may provide food, temperature control, hydrological benefits, architectural enhancement, habitats or corridors for wildlife, recreational opportunities, and in large scale it may even have ecological benefits. The practice of cultivating food on the rooftop of buildings is sometimes referred to as rooftop farming. Rooftop farming is usually done using green roof, hydroponics, aeroponics or air-dynaponics systems or container gardens.

Becoming green is a high priority for urban planners in Seacastle. The environmental and aesthetic benefits to the city is the prime motivation. The planters on a roof garden may be designed for a variety of functions and vary greatly in depth to satisfy aesthetic and recreational purposes. Seacastle is active in green urban development. When surveyed, 90% of Seacastle citizens voted for roof gardens to be implemented in the city's plans. According to Joe Budd, "Roof gardens present possibilities for carrying the notions of nature and open space further in tall building development." Recreational reasons, such as leisure and relaxation, beautifying the environment, and greenery and nature, received the most votes. Planters can hold a range of ornamental plants: anything from trees, shrubs, vines, or an assortment of flowers. As aesthetics and recreation are the priority they may not provide the environmental and energy benefits of a green roof.

climate

Climate data for Seacastle
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 15.0
(59)
13.9
(57)
20.0
(68)
23.1
(73.6)
25.1
(77.2)
29.1
(84.4)
27.5
(81.5)
31.4
(88.5)
24.7
(76.5)
25.2
(77.4)
16.7
(62.1)
13.0
(55.4)
31.4
(88.5)
Average high °C (°F) 6.4
(43.5)
6.7
(44.1)
8.8
(47.8)
11.0
(51.8)
13.5
(56.3)
16.5
(61.7)
19.0
(66.2)
19.0
(66.2)
16.5
(61.7)
12.9
(55.2)
9.3
(48.7)
6.7
(44.1)
12.2
(54)
Average low °C (°F) 1.7
(35.1)
1.5
(34.7)
2.9
(37.2)
4.6
(40.3)
7.1
(44.8)
9.8
(49.6)
12.0
(53.6)
12.1
(53.8)
10.3
(50.5)
7.6
(45.7)
4.3
(39.7)
2.2
(36)
6.4
(43.5)
Record low °C (°F) -8.0
(17.6)
-8.4
(16.9)
-8.7
(16.3)
-5.0
(23)
-3.0
(26.6)
0.1
(32.2)
4.2
(39.6)
3.2
(37.8)
0.8
(33.4)
-2.4
(27.7)
-7.7
(18.1)
-9.1
(15.6)
-9.1
(15.6)
Average Precipitation mm (inches) 57.3
(2.256)
46.2
(1.819)
49.8
(1.961)
52.1
(2.051)
43.8
(1.724)
63.0
(2.48)
54.4
(2.142)
64.4
(2.535)
60.7
(2.39)
64.8
(2.551)
69.6
(2.74)
66.3
(2.61)
692.4
(27.26)
Average rainy days (≥ 1.0 mm) 12.2 10.5 10.4 9.2 8.6 10.1 9.5 9.5 9.3 11.0 12.4 12.5 125.2
Sunshine hours 54.7 80.5 111.9 156.1 205.6 190.6 204.2 188.2 142.6 103.9 64.5 50.2 1,553
Source: Seacastle Weather Observatory

Economy

Infrastructure

Demographics

Education

Healthcare

Culture

See also

  1. 1.0 1.1 Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named Britannica
  2. Cuyvers, Luc (1986). The Strait of Dover. BRILL. p. 2. ISBN 9789024732524. https://books.google.com/books?id=WBX6rrR20zYC&pg=PA2. 
  3. Green, Dennis Howard (2003). The Continental Saxons from the Migration Period to the Tenth Century: An Ethnographic Perspective. Frank Siegmund. Boydell Press. pp. 48–50. ISBN 9781843830269. https://books.google.com/?id=MThYNoTutLkC&pg=PA49. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Lua error in Module:Citation/CS1/Identifiers at line 47: attempt to index field 'wikibase' (a nil value).
  5. Lewis, H. D.; Ross, Archibald; Runyan, Timothy J. (1985). European Naval and Maritime History, 300–1500. Indiana University Press. p. 128. ISBN 9780253320827. https://books.google.com/?id=OzIRDbARyWIC&pg=PA128. 
  6. Hansen, Mogens Herman (2000). A Comparative Study of Thirty City-state Cultures: An Investigation. Kgl. Danske Videnskabernes Selskab. p. 305. ISBN 9788778761774. https://books.google.com/?id=8qvY8pxVxcwC&pg=PA305. 
  7. Køppen, Adolph Ludvig; Karl Spruner von Merz (1854). The World in the Middle Ages. New York: D. Appleton and Company. p. 179. OCLC 3621972. https://archive.org/details/bub_gb_4bujwAigzEgC. 
  8. Ripley, George R; Charles Anderson Dana (1869). The New American Cyclopædia: A Popular Dictionary of General Knowledge. New York: D. Appleton. p. 540. https://books.google.com/?id=2AAoAAAAYAAJ&pg=RA1-PA539. 
  9. Cook, Harold John (2007). Matters of Exchange: Commerce, Medicine, and Science in the Dutch Golden Age. Yale University Press. p. 7. ISBN 978-0-300-11796-7. https://books.google.com/?id=haiG4P79gysC&pg=PA7. 
  10. 10.0 10.1 Findlay, Ronald; Kevin H. O'Rourke (2007). Power and Plenty: Trade, War, and the World Economy in the Second Millennium. Princeton University Press. p. 187 and 238. ISBN 9780691118543. https://archive.org/details/powerplentytrade00rona. 
  11. MacDonald, Scott (2004). A History of Credit and Power in the Western World. Albert L. Gastmann. Transaction Publishers. pp. 122–127, 134. ISBN 978-0-7658-0833-2. https://books.google.com/?id=5wlngm9J29kC&pg=PA134. 
  12. Sondhaus, Lawrence (2001). Naval Warfare, 1815–1914. New York: Routledge. p. 183. ISBN 978-0-415-21478-0. https://books.google.com/?id=TKXn0IQBKCcC&pg=PA183. 
  13. 13.0 13.1 Halpern, Paul G. (1994). A naval history of World War I. Ontario: Routledge. pp. 29, 180. ISBN 978-1-85728-498-0. https://books.google.com/?id=6hwb6ovvYCcC&printsec=frontcover. 
  14. Tucker, Spencer (September 2005) [2005]. World War I: Encyclopedia. Priscilla Mary Roberts. New York, USA: ABC-CLIO. pp. 836–838. ISBN 978-1-85109-420-2. https://books.google.com/?id=B1cMtKQP3P8C&pg=RA2-PA836. 
  15. Osborne, Eric W. (2006). The Battle of Heligoland Bight. London: Indiana University Press. p. Introduction. ISBN 978-0-253-34742-8. https://books.google.com/?id=4IcGeprPmDkC&printsec=frontcover. 
  16. 16.0 16.1 Sondhaus, Lawrence (2004). Navies in Modern World History. London: Reaktion Books. pp. 190–193, 256. ISBN 978-1-86189-202-7. https://books.google.com/?id=Ka-1eQRnXMUC&printsec=frontcover. 
  17. Tucker, Spencer; Priscilla Mary Roberts (September 2005) [2005]. World War I: Encyclopedia. London: ABC-CLIO. pp. 165, 203, 312. ISBN 9781851094202. https://books.google.com/?id=B1cMtKQP3P8C&printsec=frontcover&dq=World+War+I:+Encyclopedia. 
  18. Frank, Hans (15 October 2007) [2007]. German S-Boats in Action in the Second World War: In the Second World War. Naval Institute Press. pp. 12–30. ISBN 9781591143093. https://books.google.com/?id=lGDxkiWKa-IC&pg=PA12. 
  19. "Atlantic, WW2, U-boats, convoys, OA, OB, SL, HX, HG, Halifax, RCN ..." Naval-History.net. Retrieved 24 July 2007.
  20. Kaffka, Alexander V. (1996). Sea-dumped Chemical Weapons: Aspects, Problems, and Solutions. North Atlantic Treaty Organization Scientific Affairs Division. New York, USA: Springer. p. 49. ISBN 978-0-7923-4090-4. https://books.google.com/?id=TGJ5qp7QrgMC&pg=PA49. 
  21. It was, incidentally, the home of several Pirate Radio stations from 1960 to 1990. Johnston, Douglas M. (1976) [1976]. Marine Policy and the Coastal Community. London: Taylor & Francis. p. 49. ISBN 978-0-85664-158-9. https://books.google.com/?id=9I8OAAAAQAAJ&pg=RA2-PA195. 
  22. "Forth Ports PLC". 2008. Retrieved 11 November 2007.