Green Burials for a Cleaner Planet

Green burials are the result of the massive human population that is quickly depleting every resource there is. Our planet can scarcely cope

Traditional burials actually uses up a massive amount of resources. Now thinking people are objecting to the idea of being pumped full of chemicals and having their faces made up in ways that they never were when they were alive.

They don’t care for having ridiculous, elaborate non-degradable caskets that introduce harmful substances like glues into the soil.

Certainly in countries like South Africa, a disadvantage with burials is the space issue.

Green Burials – Nature doesn’t take Kindly to Embalming

Green BurialsWith alarming population growth as well as the huge death toll from HIV/Aids, traditional cemeteries are filling up quickly. And they are polluting the land with chemicals and fortress-type coffins with metal handles. All of this takes centuries to decompose.

Cremation doesn’t require cemetery space and is cheaper than burials. However, the downside is the release of toxins and greenhouse gas emissions. South Africa’s first green burial site, a privately owned 300 hectare nature reserve, is near Stellenbosch in the Western Cape.

Known as the Wiesenhof Legacy Park, it offers burial plots as well as areas for ash scattering. The truth is that when people die, many fancy the idea of ‘going back to the earth.’

And they believe in wearing a natural cotton shroud. They believe the body should laid directly into the soil, and trees and flowers planted directly over them.

Up until fairly recently, burying the dead included costly coffins made of wood and metal. The body contained embalming chemicals. And this added toxins into the soil. This has resulted in polluted soils where nature is stunted. Green burials are all about being gentle on the environment so that new life such as trees, grass and flowers can spring up and surround the dead.

Green Burials – Green Cemeteries become Natural Assets for Changing Times

These days the world is waking up to the abuse they have dished out to mother nature, there are newer, more environmentally friendly ways to bury the dead.

Embalming fluids are not used and the coffin is made from natural materials to encourage rapid decomposition. With green burials, the body is wrapped in biodegradable shrouds woven from natural fabrics such as cotton or linen.

Green funeral practices for a green burial are all about biodegradable materials, and caskets and urns are sourced from sustainable woods, while some people are more than happy to settle for cardboard or beautiful bamboo, banana leaf or woven Willow.

The benefits of green burials don’t only come from eradicating the use of metals and embalming fluids, but also with the development of green cemeteries. Countries like the United Kingdom and the United States have already developed a number of green cemeteries which offer low-impact-to-the-environment cemeteries.

If you aren’t sure whether a funeral home is green or not, ask the funeral director, because even if they are not, they may be happy to comply and provide a green burial for you.


More people around the world are doing research and are becoming more clued up about green burials. Funeral directors may not like it, as it equates to less money for them, but if they want to keep up with the changing times, they are going to have to make provision for green burials, as its what the world wants now.

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All info was correct at time of publishing