The law of property provides the building blocks for our market economy and is a manifestation of our post French and American Revolution thinking on how we want to organise ourselves. That organisational structure has not always been fair or equal around the world. European property law systems have been exported around the globe, yet outside of Europe things have been possible, such as owning another person (slavery) or extracting wealth from land at all costs. This was unthinkable on the European continent. These differences have led to an increasingly unequal division of property between people, countries and even continents. Some can extract a lot of wealth and pollute the planet from their property, whilst others have nothing. An unsustainable use of the planet’s resources where we live outside of our planetary boundaries is the result. This short book argues thatthis is notthe way forward. Ourlaw must be resilientin a transformative manner and European systems need to accept their role in how this has come to be. Based on that, we need to rethink how we can reform our law of property so that it allows us to live within our planetary boundaries.
Bram Akkermans is Professor of Property Law at Maastricht University. Bram specialises in sustainability and property law and combines property theory with property doctrine to explore how property law can accommodate sustainability. He is also Director of Studies of Dutch-language undergraduate programmes at the Maastricht Law Faculty.