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Written by Heidi Schwartz. Posted in Environment, Friday Funny

Tagged: , ,

Published on July 01, 2011 with 1 Comment

The concept of sustainability has made its way into almost every aspect of life. Companies, universities, and even individuals are trying to find ways to live “greener.” And now even death is getting a green tint as well.

Usually when we discuss green and sustainable issues, “[they apply] to things that make our lives healthier [and] more prosperous, with a reduced impact on the environment,” according to Stephen Ashkin, president of The Ashkin Group, and green leader in the professional cleaning industry. Now it appears green and sustainable also apply to dying.

According to new research presented at the international conference of the Royal Geographical Society, which promotes the study of geography, Britain now has more green burials and more green burial sites than any other country in the world. In 1993, there was only one green burial sitein the U.K.; today there are more than 200. In the United States, where green burials are also becoming more common, there are about 20 green burial sites currently operating or under development.

A green burial ensures that interment of the body takes place in a biodegradable casket or shroud or even a favorite blanket of the deceased. No embalming fluid, concrete, or similar materials that might harm the environment and are customarily used in a conventional burial are employed. The body is laid to rest in what is termed a green cemetery, which is more like a forest preserve than a traditional cemetery. According to Ashkin, a green burial is not a form of cremation; instead, the body is kept intact and simply laid to rest underground.  

“The growing interest in green burials should not be surprising,” adds Ashkin. “As more people become concerned about the environment and sustainability, it’s only natural that they would want their final resting place to be green and sustainable as well.”

About Heidi Schwartz

Heidi Schwartz

Schwartz joined Group C Media in April 1989 as managing editor of Today's Facility Manager (TFM) magazine (formerly Business Interiors) where she was subsequently promoted to editor/co-publisher of the monthly trade magazine for facility management professionals. In September 2012, she took over the newly created position of internet director for TFM's parent company, Group C Media, where she is charged with developing content and creating online strategies for TFM and its sister publication, Business Facilities. Schwartz can be reached at

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1 Comment

There are currently 1 Comment on FRIDAY FUNNY: Dying Green. Perhaps you would like to add one of your own?

  1. I love the article but it’s creepy. Just goes to show how we need to think about ALL of our impacts on the environment. But maybe we should just toss ourselves into the compost pile …

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