When totting up the costs of a funeral, many people also are starting to consider the environmental costs. Traditional funerals can have more of an impact on the environment that you might imagine, whereas eco coffins can help to ensure that a funeral is environmentally friendly.
The environmental impact of a ‘traditional’ funeral
Annually, conventional burials use many tonnes of wood and concrete and many gallons of the poisonous chemical Formaldehyde. As a result, some will makers ask to be cremated as they believe this to be a more environmentally friendly option. However, cremation has its own environmental drawbacks. Most significantly, cremation releases carbon monoxide and other pollutants into the atmosphere. If the deceased has any dental fillings, then this will also release damaging mercury into the air. Cremation is an energy intensive option for a funeral, using substantial resources when it comes to fuels. So, it seems that rather than cremation or traditional burial, eco coffins are a good option for anyone who wants to make their funeral as environmentally friendly as possible.
The benefits of eco coffins
Eco friendly coffins are made from a variety of sustainable and biodegradable materials. These include bamboo, banana and pine woods. The advantage here is that these woods are grown and harvested in a sustainable way, and they are left untreated so that they will naturally degrade. Unlike traditional coffins, these coffins do not contain formaldehyde or metal or plastic fittings (which, of course will not degrade even if the wooden coffin eventually does). It is also possible to choose these eco friendly materials for a cremation casket.
Integrating an eco coffin into an eco friendly funeral
As well as choosing an eco coffin, you can make your entire funeral eco friendly by opting for a natural burial site or seeking a churchyard that is reusing old graves for burials. The latter option will make the process of burial less resource intensive. The former option – choosing a natural burial site – helps to preserve areas of natural beauty for future generations. This is because a woodland or other natural site is used for burials, the land cannot be redeveloped for industrial, residential or commercial use. There are plenty of natural burial sites available up and down the country, and it is also possible to be buried on your own land provided that you comply with the relevant legislation.