The Environmental Benefits of Direct Cremation

June 08, 2021

It is noteworthy to recognize that funeral rituals influence our experience of death and impact our surroundings, either positive or negative. Some traditional end-of-life disposition methods tend to place a considerable strain on the environment. Thankfully, climate-friendly alternatives exist. From preferring welfare gifts over flowers to a low-impact final disposition by cremation, we can decrease the impact on the environment using eco-friendly ways when memorializing our loved ones.

These days, most people select direct cremation to minimize the carbon footprint and lessen the financial strain of funeral services on their families.

What is a direct cremation?

A direct cremation is a final disposition method in which the body is cremated directly after the death, without embalming, viewing, or any other funeral service, beforehand.

It is the most affordable option for disposition. All the arrangements are directly made by a loved one of the departed. A direct cremation package does not include any ceremonial services. Many people arrange formal services later, in the form of a memorial ceremony to commemorate the loved one who has passed away.

What makes direct cremation an eco-friendly option?

We cannot overlook the fact that the process of cremation does release carbon emissions. However, the carbon footprint of cremation is considerably smaller than that of traditional burials. Direct cremation impacts the environment to a much lesser extent as it requires fewer resources, and the pollution caused by its process is insignificant. Although a 100% environmental-friendly disposition cannot be achieved, measures can be taken to minimize harm to the environment.

Conserves valuable land:

Another matter of serious attention is that the United States might run out of valuable land because cemeteries and traditional graves occupy a lot of space. Cemeteries and different burial sites take up nearly one million acres of land in the U.S.

Also, numerous caskets are manufactured from non-biodegradable materials and long-lasting hardwood, which means they'll continue covering these burial areas for several years to come. Burial occupies rare and valuable land, whereas direct cremation leaves a minimal trace. Even if you decide to keep your loved one's ashes in your home or inter them in a columbarium or ground, that is still a significantly smaller space than that covered by a traditional grave.

Plays no part in deforestation carbon footprint:

Another environmental concern regarding funerals is the quantity of wood required for the manufacturing of a traditional coffin. As reported by the Berkeley Planning Journal, traditional burials in the U.S. use 30 million board feet of hardwood per year in the form of caskets. To meet this demand, 4 million square acres of forests have been depleted each year that could have eliminated 65 million tons of carbon dioxide.

Biodegradable cremation urns prove to be an ecologically ideal alternative for the burial of ashes. These urns can help reduce the carbon footprint and honor the departed in a way that resonates. These biological containers are made from recycled materials, which naturally decompose into harmless elements over time. Not only are they organically composed and structured, but some urns also contain seeds that grow into a tree. And on average, a single tree can produce almost 260 pounds of oxygen per year. The Living Urn is one of America's leading biodegradable urn & planting systems, uniquely designed to grow an enduring tree or any type of plant with cremains.

Less energy used for transportation:

When traveling a distance to lay your departed loved one to rest, an urn would be the best transportation option.

As cremains offer more portability, you can pick a centralized location to reduce carbon emissions released by traveling to the memorial service.

Eco-Friendly memorial options:

Usually, loved ones of those whose final wishes were rooted in preserving nature honor their deceased loved one by choosing the end-to-life commemorations that reflect the departed's beliefs, values, and preferences.

Some unique ways to arrange an eloquent, environmental-friendly memorial can include:

  • Use a bio urn for holding the ashes and burying them where you feel is most fitting.
  • As a sympathy gift, the family can establish a commemorative fund to honor their loved one if the deceased was devoted to a cause, like environmental protection.
  • You can use a tree or a flowering plant to create a permanent site for friends and family to gather around, no matter where the ashes are scattered or buried.
  • For memorial service or post-scattering ceremony, make sure to choose environmentally friendly alternatives. You can give verbal tributes instead of printed programs, carpool commuting between points, transfer plants to the ground rather than cutting flowers, etc.

And, if your loved one has departed recently, you still have plenty of time to arrange a direct cremation. You can contact us online or call for cremation services in Northern California. Our dedicated team will brief you on our process and respond to any inquiries you might have. In a very short time, you'll be able to put your mind at ease, knowing that your beloved will be in our safe care.