FaithWorld

Latest body disposal technology widens choices for green funerals

By Reuters Staff
September 13, 2012

(The graveyard of the church at Haworth, England July 20, 2009. REUTERS/Kevin Coombs)

Burnt, buried or frozen and turned to powder are some of the options for dealing with the remains of a loved one whose last wishes include lessening death’s environmental impact.

Our demise can have a big environmental impact. Around three quarters of people in the United Kingdom alone are cremated after they die but cremation uses about the same amount of domestic energy as a person uses in a month.

Globally, cremation emits over 6.8 million metric tonnes of carbon dioxide every year, accounting for around 0.02 percent of world carbon dioxide emissions, experts estimate.

It also causes mercury pollution when tooth fillings are vaporised. Currently, up to 16 percent of all mercury emitted in the United Kingdom comes from crematoria, which could rise to 25 percent by 2020 without any action, according to government figures.

The UK government is forcing cremators to fit mercury filters by the end of 2012 to halve mercury emissions although statistics are not yet available on progress towards this goal.

Some companies are trying to cut overall emissions from funeral technologies by developing alternatives to cremation.

In India, Hindus traditionally cremate dead bodies by burning firewood in an open ground.

The wood required comes from 50 to 60 million trees a year. When burnt, they emit some 8 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions per year, according to Mokshda, a Delhi-based non-governmental organisation which is working to reduce the environmental impact of funeral pyres.

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“ashes to ashes,dust to dust” Think about it in HIS way not man’s. Although

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