Four Ways Green Burials Try To Minimize Their Environmental Impact

If you're researching options for your future funeral arrangements, you may have heard of some ecologically friendly funerary options. One of these is the "green burial" or "natural burial" movement, which purports to allow you to become one with the earth in a more natural fashion than a traditional burial would. But how exactly do they do this? You may not realize how many different ways a traditional burial can harm the environment. Here are four different aspects of a green burial that help the earth.

1. They avoid chemicals

In a traditional burial, the remains of the deceased are subjected to a process known as embalming. This is a common practice, but one that natural burials skip over. Because the embalming process is designed to preserve the remains, this will mean that you'll have to have the funeral sooner if you're planning on a natural burial. The philosophy of the natural burial is that avoiding these chemicals during the process can actually benefit the Earth in several ways, such as by diminishing demand for chemical production.

2. Uninhibited environment

In a natural burial, the remains are often placed in a simple shroud and a (usually biodegradable) casket. Many people, when they stop to think about it, may actually prefer this simple laying to rest. The process places fewer layers and restrictions than usual between the remains and the environment of the cemetery. This means the remains will be able to become one with nature that much sooner.

3. Avoids using non-renewable resources

Natural burials tend to avoid the use of coffins and vaults, partly because these can be made of non-renewable resources such as metal and unsustainably harvested wood. You may not consider this a negative thing, since these materials can be a vital part of the traditional funeral arrangements. However, natural burial proponents do place a big emphasis on only burying materials that are both biodegradable and responsibly produced.

4. Avoids pollution

In addition to mitigating the threat of embalming fluid, natural burial may also eschew pollution in other ways. For example, a natural burial facility may use hand-dug graves. This is very doable, since the remains are buried more shallowly in order to allow them to become one with the earth. And it lends a personal touch to the experience as well.

A "green burial" facility has unique opportunities to help the environment by preventing pollution and contamination, allowing a gentle and natural return to the earth, and minimizing the use of the world's precious resources. If you're on a tight budget, green burial can also help you stick to it. Not paying for burial vaults, coffins, cement headstones, and embalming can be a real break for your pocketbook. For more information, talk to a professional like Memorial Mortuaries.