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The terms “property’” and “sustainability” call forth a number of different thematic enquiries. Perhaps the strongest of these is the relationship between property and environmental sustainability. The latter decades of the 20th century saw a shift in focus from the recognition of private property rights in natural resources in order to facilitate economic development to the idea of the protection of the environment through ecologically sustainable development. The recent unprecedented floods in the eastern States of Australia, fires in Western Australia, destructive earthquakes in New Zealand and the devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan, serve to highlight this shift in emphasis. Many of the chapters in this compilation focus on this important aspect of the property and sustainability relationship.
However, other chapters address broader themes including: the sustainability and workability of the Torrens system and its cornerstone, indefeasibility of title; the sustainability of emerging trends in securities law; and the sustainability of two long-established principles of property law, the doctrine of conversion and the rule against perpetuities.
Property and Sustainability: Selected Essays is an edited compilation of papers presented by highly regarded Australian and international academics at the Australasian Property Law Teachers Conference 2010 covering the theme of property and sustainability. This collection follows on from Property and Security: Selected Essays, an edited compilation of the papers delivered at the 2009 conference. Both of these collections are an important resource for students, practitioners and academic researchers.
The chapters in these two compilations explore the complexities in the law and make arguments for legal change. The reform recommendations make these publications highly relevant to policy makers within Australia, at both Federal and State level.