I couldn't care less what happens to my body after I die and I am done using it. So the following, which I suppose is intended to freak me out, simply leaves me amazed yet again at green thinking
Undertakers in Belgium plan to eschew traditional burials and cremations and start dissolving corpses instead.
The move is intended to tackle a lack of burial space and environmental concerns as 573lbs of carbon dioxide are released by each cremated corpse.
Under the process, known as resomation, bodies are treated in a steel chamber with potassium hydroxide at high pressure and a temperature of 180c (350f).
The raised pressure and temperature means the body reaches a similar end point as in standard cremation "” just bones left to be crushed up "” in two to three hours.
My first thought on reading this was "Soylent Green is People!"
My second is to wonder how a torched body creates 573 pounds of CO2. 12 pounds of carbon combusts to 44 pounds (approx) of Co2. This means that to combust to 573 pounds of Co2, the human body must have 156 pounds of carbon. WTF? But carbon in 18% of human body weight, which means that to produce 573 pounds of CO2, the human body would have to weigh 867 pounds. One might be able to get this number by including the cremation fuel in the equation (though this is a generous interpretation since this is not how the article is written), but since it is usually gas used for cremation it would take a hell of a lot of gas given its low carbon content.
My third thought is what does any of this have to do with CO2 reduction
- The process occurs at 350F. You mean no fossil fuels are used to get the chamber up to 350F. What, are they using solar mirrors?
- The process occurs at high pressure. This takes energy
- The end product is a carb0n rich soup that they pour down the drain or pour on their garden. I have a clue for you, all oxidation is not combustion. That carbon dumped in your garden or in your compost heap will still become CO2 even without seeing aflame.