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What Is A Green Funeral Service And Why Are They Popular?

Shutterstock Licensed Photo - By Orhan Cam

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Green burials used to be popular in the 1800s. They are becoming more popular again. In fact, The New York Times recently reported that 54% of families are considering a green funeral.

The Sudden Popularity of Green Funerals

A green funeral service is an environmentally friendly alternative to traditional funerals. During a green funeral service, the body is buried, without embalming and stored in a natural environment. The casket that is used is non-toxic and biodegradable, so it doesn’t cause any harm to the ground or surrounding environment where those who have passed are buried. This also means that traditional headstones are not used.

Instead, plants and trees are generally used as grave markers. Green funeral services are not actually new even though they are growing in popularity in the modern age. Most burials that took place over 200 years were conducted in this way. But, why are green funerals becoming such a popular choice of service? Let’s take a look.

They Protect The Environment and Natural Areas

One of the biggest reasons that people choose to opt for a green funeral service over a traditional one is to protect the environment. Green burial sites restore and preserve the natural landscape, because they are populated by flowers and trees. They are full of wildlife. Green burial sites (otherwise known as natural cemeteries) are focused on conservation and protecting the environment. They do not use any chemical, pesticides or fertilizer and are considered an important component and contributor to the natural conservation of the green environment.

Cheaper Than Traditional Funeral Services

Because green funerals do not involve many of things that traditional funerals do, this means that they are much cheaper. They do not involve embalming or coffins, so are a cost-effective alternative to traditional burials. If a family choose to make their loved one’s casket at home, then this also reduces the funeral cost. MarketWatch reports that affordability is actually one of the biggest reasons many people are choosing green funerals. However, the costs do vary from $495 to $7,595, depending on the city.

They Conserve Natural Resources

Each year, millions of tons of hardwood and steel is buried all around the world which many consider as damaging to the environment and a waste of natural resources. With green funerals, fewer resources are used and the environment isn’t affected by the burials that take place. You may have heard the term “ashes to ashes, dust to dust”, with green funerals this really is the case.

Family and Friends Can Be Creative with Floral Tributes

Green funerals can allow families and friends to be very creative when it comes to flowers and floral tributes. When creating floral tributes try to stay clear of using cellophane and plastic. Instead, go for natural materials such as woven baskets.

You Can Also Choose Cremation

The great thing about green funerals is that it gives people the option to be naturally buried or cremated. However, both principles apply in the fact that traditional coffins are not allowed to be used. Instead, the ashes must be buried in natural materials that we will degrade over time and have no impact on the environment.  In fact, ashes do even need to be buried at all and can alternatively be scattered in a green cemetery or natural environment.

Pre-plan Your Service if You Want a Green Funeral

Preplanning your funeral isn’t something that might be at the top of your list of things to do. However, it can save your family a lot of emotional stress when the unfortunate time comes, and you pass away.  By making your plans known now, you can reflect your environmental values and let your family know that you want a green funeral service. And, before the time comes you can enjoy a green way of life with the knowledge that your values will be respected when you die.

Consider the Benefits of Green Funerals

Green funerals are great options for many reasons. You need to consider them if you are planning a funeral in the near future.

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