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California legalises ecological burial: Human composting

California legalises ecological burial: Human composting

Image source: © canva
Anna RusakAnna Rusak,02.01.2024 10:30

The state of California has recently passed a law allowing for ecological burial, also known as "human composting." This process is now available to those who are environmentally conscious. However, some Catholics living in California are vehemently opposed to this idea and have criticised the decision.

It has become increasingly common for places to legalise eco-friendly burials. States such as Oregon, Washington and Colorado in the US have already allowed for "human composting".

Recently, California has also legalised this method of burial. However, church representatives have expressed their disagreement with the decision, as they fear the possibility of mass graves in public areas.

Ecological burial, or "human composting"

"Human composting" or ecological burial is a simple procedure. The remains of the deceased are placed in a reusable stainless-steel vessel. Biodegradable material, such as wood shavings and flowers, is then added to the same vessel.

After about a month, the remains are fully decomposed, and the resulting soil is nutrient-rich. This soil can be passed on to the relatives of the deceased.

This form of cremation is environmentally friendly as it avoids the emission of CO2 into the atmosphere and does not require the use of chemicals, which are used in the process of embalming bodies.

Eco-friendly burial in the state of California

The Governor of California has released a statement emphasising that the state's recent legalisation of "human composting" provides people with more burial options, particularly those concerned about climate change. Additionally, California State Assemblymember Cristina Garcia has highlighted the environmental benefits of this option.

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"With climate change and sea-level rise as genuine threats to our environment, this is an alternative method of final disposition that won’t contribute emissions into our atmosphere," Garcia's post reads.

Church disagrees with eco-friendly burial in California

Representatives of the Roman Catholic Church in California disagree with the decision to allow ecological burials. They argue that such burials emotionally and psychologically distance one from the deceased and may create mass graves in public spaces, with people unknowingly walking over the remains of the dead.

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However, their concerns are unfounded. California law prohibits the reuniting of remains without the consent of families, and it is also forbidden to grow crops in areas where 'human compost' is spread. It's important to note that not everyone shares the same faith as Catholics, so their concerns about ecological burial may not be convincing to everyone.

Source: latimes.com

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