ECO320 – Tutorial 3
If everyone has free access to a public beach, who, if anyone, has the power to control
the use of this resource?
In what ways do these historical developments respond to efficiency, and to what
extent do they respond to political power and distribution?
Read the following account of the history of water law and discuss whether the law
appears to have evolved toward economic efficiency.
Suppose the statute of limitations for adverse possession is 10 years. After 9.9 years of
trespass owners retain full rights, but after 10 years of trespass owners lose all of their
rights. Instead of owners losing their rights abruptly at the end of 10 years, the statute
could be written so that the rights depreciate gradually over time. For example, the
trespasser could be granted a 10 percent interest in the property for each year of
adverse possession, so that after one year the trespasser would own 10 per cent of it
and after 10 years the trespasser would own all of it. Compare the efficiency of the
“discontinuous rule” and the “continuous rule.”