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Burial or Cremation and the impact on the environment

Jan 27, 2021 | News

When it comes to making funeral plans, it is probably the biggest decision you are ever going to make. So what’s the better- Burial or Cremation? Well the truth is, there is no easy answer.

The choice between cremation and burial is a personal one. Generally the cost of burial is higher than the cost for cremation.

Research has shown that cremation has a lower carbon footprint than a traditional cemetery burial. The process uses gas to fuel combustion and the coffin components add fuel and heat, therefore reducing the amount of gas required.

Burials have a higher carbon footprint than cremations due to the process of decay which emits methane to the atmosphere, which is more damaging than carbon dioxide emitted during a cremation. Also the upkeep of a cemetery requires staff such as groundsmen and other machinery which all add to carbon emissions.

Graves are usually purchased for perpetuity, therefore preventing use for agriculture or development purposes. In the case of a natural burial the land will return to a natural habitat.

These statistics indicate that at this time, the decision to be cremated versus being buried is close to 50/50.

The benefits of a cremation are that families have more time to decide what to do with the ashes after the cremation ceremony. Ideas include scattering ashes, cremation art and jewellery are just a few.

The advantage of a burial is that it provides families and friends with a place to visit, and considered by some a more natural method.

There is a lot to consider, but ultimately it is a personal choice.

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