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Natural burial is the only sustainable way to dispose of human remains.
Many people wrongly believe that cremation is best for the environment, as their remains will not take up space and expand the scale of cemeteries - however cremation uses massive amounts of finite fossil fuel (in excess of 10 million cubic metres each year in the UK alone) and emits toxic dioxins, mercury vapour and furans into the atmosphere. Each year in the UK about 440,000 cremations take place, so the scale of the problem is immense.
Planting a tree goes some way to help balance the environmental cost of cremation.
The benefits of natural burials are these..
- the place of burial is a special place to celebrate nature and life
- using natural, biodegradable materials for the coffin, shroud or casket will ensure that the materials will return to and nourish the earth
- the quality and character of the landscape is not spoiled by the infrastructure and artificial surroundings of a conventional cemetery
- by choosing not to embalm, you ensure that none of the harmful substances used in the embalming process are released into the soil
- simple burials do not create the dioxins, furans and other atmospheric pollution associated with cremation (according to the National Atmospheric Emissions Inventory 11% of UK atmospheric dioxins resulting from combustion come from crematoria)
- cremation uses huge quantities of natural gas, a finite natural resource. Every year in the UK there are about 440,000 cremations, which is totally unsustainable and harmful to the environment