A cryomator. Pic source
Well-meaning ignorance fuels lots of heated debate in Funeralworld. Broadsides of stats are exchanged, but how many of them are verifiable? In one thing we can trust: probably no one’s yet done the science.
Take the following press release from the respected news agency Reuters:
Globally, cremation emits over 6.8 million metric tonnes of carbon dioxide every year, accounting for around 0.02 percent of world carbon dioxide emissions, experts estimate.
Typical. Authoritative-sounding stats undermined by the last two words. Substitute ‘some people guess’.
What follows, though, will interest those who have been following the freeze-dry saga and its two players, promession and its successor, cryomation. We’ve always been fans of the Cryomation people here at the GFG.
Suffolk-based Cryomation Ltd has developed a technology which freezes a body using liquid nitrogen until it is brittle, removes metal elements and turns the remains into a powder which could be composted, buried in a natural graveyard or scattered.
Having proven the technology, the firm is now seeking 1.5 million pounds to build the first unit.
We believe this to be correct.
“The cryomation process has been talked about for far too long but never been delivered,” said Paul Smith, business development manager at parent company IRTL.
Right, Paul. Yes, we can read between the lines!
“Our technology (..) can remove moisture at a cost-effective rate and at a suitable speed to make it a viable alternative to cremation with lots of environmental benefits,” he added.
Excellent. And the first part of the next sentence certainly rings true:
A report last year by Dutch research group TMO said resomation and cryomation had the lowest environmental impact of all funeral methods and burial had the highest.
What?!? Burial’s the worst of the lot??
Indeed, burial is not a “green” option. It takes up space underground, the decaying process emits the greenhouse gas methane and caskets use a lot of steel, copper, bronze or wood.
Think what we could do with all that underground space. As for methane, is this, someone please tell us, a graveyard myth? If it’s a myth it certainly once had me fooled but I think, am I right? that it’s been exploded. Does it actually pose any risk at all? If it does, the solution lies in ensuring that buried dead people enjoy aerobic decomposition by burying them nearer the surface. As for caskets, well, we needn’t bother ourselves with them, we’re mostly good ole toe-pincher people over here.
The effect of formaldehyde-based embalming chemicals when they leak into the soil and air through burial is also thought to be potentially damaging but needs more research.
Thought to be, eh? We’ll wait for them to finish their ‘more research’ if you don’t mind. Uttering hunches while they’re at it rather negates the point of doing it, yes? Surely it can’t be that flipping difficult to discover what happens to formaldehyde when it seeps into the earth.
If any reader can help us out with some verifiable facts in these areas, you’ll be doing us all a great kindness.
Full story here
Resomation: all that is left. Pic source