Chapter

The Rule of Capture: The Least Worst Property Rule for Oil and Gas

Terence Daintith

in Property and the Law in Energy and Natural Resources

Published in print February 2010 | ISBN: 9780199579853
Published online May 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780191722745 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199579853.003.0007
 							The Rule of Capture: The Least Worst Property Rule for Oil and Gas

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This chapter analyses the rule of capture as applied to oil and gas. The rule states that oil and gas become the property of the owner of the land on which they are recovered by lawful drilling or other operations, regardless of whether they might have migrated from their original position under the land of another. Capture remains today the property right principle on which the structure of United States oil and gas law and regulation has been erected. The chapter addresses the following questions: Why was such an inefficient rule adopted in the first place? Why, once adopted, did it remain in place in the United States, despite the major difficulties it was perceived to create, and when other countries were succeeding in creating more rational and efficient systems?

Keywords: rule of capture; oil and gas; property rights; ownership; United States; property law

Chapter.  8405 words. 

Subjects: Public International Law

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