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Property is under threat, physically and conceptually, from climate change. .Martin./flickr

Can property survive the great climate transition?

To create property systems that are as dynamic as the landscapes we occupy, we might need to start thinking about ourselves as belonging to and answerable to the land, not the other way around.
Our land-title system originated in the mid-19th century when Sir Robert Richard Torrens campaigned to reform Adelaide’s chaotic deeds-based land system. National Library of Australia

Torrens, our land-title pioneer, might have approved of privatised registries

Sir Robert Richard Torrens – the man behind Australia’s 'Torrens system' of land-title registration – was an economic liberal who might have approved of privatising title registries.
While some councils wish to take a long-term view of what can reasonably be done in the face of sea-level rises, private property owners just want their homes protected. AAP/Dan Peled

Coastal law shift from property rights to climate adaptation is a landmark reform

Many properties are at risk from rising sea levels, with owners and councils at odds over the costs of defending these. NSW law reform may lead to more forward-looking climate change adaptation.
For many people, renting is preferable to buying, but many of Australia’s institutions don’t reflect that choice. April Fonti/AAP

Renting for life? Housing shift requires rethink of renters’ rights

Australia is the world capital for property speculation. Australians play property like Monopoly: buying, selling, demolishing, rebuilding, extending, renovating, always with the promise of appreciation…
Private land disguised as public space. Even London’s City Hall is rented back from the private sector. Toby Melville/PA

The privatisation of public space

When a public utility is acquired by a private equity firm, there is no doubt what kind of process is underway. The take-over of provision of services and, by extension, ability to profit from them is…
Sun and wind are intangible. It’s hard to sell them. But the State can make big money if it owns fossil fuels. Rory MacLeod

Should we extend property rights to the atmosphere?

While Australia aims to produce a fifth of its energy from renewable sources by 2020, non-renewable energy is still flourishing. But non-renewable energy sources such as coal and gas have a significant…
Argentina, like many other Latin American economies, could learn much from Australia’s economic resilience. Luis Fdez

Argentina can learn from Australia’s economic success

In 2009, I launched a book titled Drifting Apart: The Diverging Development Paths of Argentina and Australia, which I co-authored with Fernando Tohmé from Universidad Nacional del Sur in Argentina. We…

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