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In his new book, Natural Property Rights, Eric Claeys offers a property theory grounded in a person’s ability to make productive or purposive use of a resource and the requirement of clear communication about the extent of a person’s claim to that resource. This Article illustrates some of the normative and practical advantages of Claeys’s theory by using it to explicate three property disputes that have arisen in Louisiana concerning highly contested natural resources—oil, trees, and water. The Article argues that Claeys’s theory illuminates a major focal case in the development of Louisiana’s law of the obligations of neighborhood, might have produced a more satisfying outcome in a leading case concerning the usufruct of timberlands, and could help the State of Louisiana, private landowners, and recreational sportsmen resolve disputes over ownership of submerging land and water-based access on Louisiana’s disappearing coast.



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