In a “green burial” the deceased is interred in a way that does not inhibit the natural decomposition of the human body. The term also describes practices by which the disposition of human remains have as small an environmental impact as possible. With the increase in environmental awareness, practices such as natural or direct burials, which have existed for centuries, are now rising in popularity again.
Much like the choices for ground burial, there are a variety of options for green burials. Families can bury in biodegradable caskets or shrouds, opt for alternative preservatives for embalming and choose a “natural" cemetery for the burial. Caskets and urns, for example, can be made from sustainable materials such as pine, bamboo, sea grass, willow and wicker, or cardboard, to name a few. Shrouds can also be biodegradable, made from materials such as hemp and organic cotton. Talk to your funeral director about the options you have when selecting a green burial.