Tuesday, May 22, 2007
Plants Love Freeze-Dried Grandma.
So it should come as no surprise that environmentalists hope to change how we dispose of human remains. The website Terra Daily tells of a move in Sweden to freeze dry corpses and turn the remains into compost.
"The freeze-drying method offers an environmentally friendly burial transforming corpses into organic compost. Traditional burials and cremations hurt the environment by polluting air and water, as a corpse buried in a coffin will take many years to decompose completely." (Here.)What is surprising is the organization advocating the change: The Lutheran Church of Sweden. It's strange to see a Christian church promoting such dehumanizing treatment of human remains. Freeze-drying the corpse is significantly different than typical burial or cremation. In traditional burial or cremation, disposal of the body is done as an end in itself. Freeze drying, on the other hand, treats the corpse as mere raw material for plant food.
Perhaps the Lutheran Church of Sweden's involvement is not that surprising. The church is part owner of Promessa, the company that has developed the freeze-drying burial. This is what the Terra Daily story says about Promessa's plans. "Promessa has promoted the idea of using the human remains, like compost, to feed plants and shrubs." Where's Charlton Heston when you need him? (Here.)
Republished once to correct a noticed punctuation error. Whatever unnoticed errors there are remain.
Technorati: environment, religion, Sweden.