Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Consumer: Eco-Funerals

When I saw the title Eco-Funerals - Green to the Grave at the Toronto Estate Law Blog, I knew I had to read it. I heard of these on NPR several years back but I did not recall any mention of Canada, only of England and Arizona (if I recall correctly). What are they? This is a good description.

So what exactly makes a funeral eco-friendly? Green funerals do not embalm bodies with chemical preservatives, but rather dress them in clothes made from natural fibers and place them in cardboard coffins. Although they are more challenging to handle (especially when they are wet), they biodegrade within 3 months. Trees or shrubs are often used to mark individual plots, rather than marble tombstones, as marble is not a renewable resource. Irrigation and pesticides are not used.
If you do read the original post, remember that the Indiana cemetery may not be able to accommodate this sort of burial.