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New York Legalized Human Composting: A Green Alternative to Cremation

New York last weekend became the sixth US state to legalize human composting.

Human composting, scientifically called "natural organic reduction", is an environmentally friendly alternative to standard burial methods such as cremation and traditional burial.

Washington State was the first to legalize this process in 2019. Colorado and Vermont in 2021, followed by Vermont and California in 2022. New York Governor Kathy Hochul signed Congressional Bill A382 on Saturday, legalizing green burial alternatives in the state.

US Funerals defines human composting as "accelerated human decomposition methods." Its purpose is to turn the human body into usable soil. In this procedure, the human body is placed in a steel cylinder containing alfalfa, wood shavings and straw. Oxygen is then added to encourage microbial growth and speed up the decomposition process.

According to, a licensed eco-friendly funeral home, human composting is more environmentally friendly than cremation or burial because it does not use fossil fuels and does not require the resources needed for burials such as burial. It is said that it is easy to use.

"When it comes to emissions, this process saves a ton of CO2 entering the atmosphere," he said.

Alkaline hydrolysis or water incineration is another environmentally friendly alternative to flame incineration. According to experts, water cremation uses 90% less energy than traditional cremation and releases no toxins into the air.

Cremation is one of the most common burial methods in the United States.
According to Cremation Association statistics, the cremation rate in the United States in 2022 was about 58%. A conventional cremation would produce enough CO2 to fly from London to Rome, according to US Funerals. In addition, experts say the process releases other air pollutants such as carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides and heavy metals. However, the world's crematoriums emit only a small percentage of air pollutants and greenhouse gases.

The idea of ​​human composting has sparked disagreement. In November, the New York Catholic Convention urged Catholics to appeal to the Gov. Hochul and requesting her for a veto against the bill that would legalize human composting. The bishops do not believe that this process meets our standards for the reverential treatment of corpses on earth.

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Tags: #environment #latestnews #unitedstates #newyork


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