Last year, we did an article on Resomation Ltd, a Scottish company that aims to combat the environmental impact of cremation by dissolving bodies in a commercial “alkaline hydrolysis” unit, called The Resomator. The firm has already set up a branch in Florida, but now they have opened up a second unit in the state of Minnesota.
For those of you that weren’t aware, standard cremation is rather bad for the environment. Burning a body results in nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, particulate matter, mercury, hydrogen fluoride (HF), hydrogen chloride (HCI), NMVOCS and a host of other heavy metals being released into the atmosphere.
Resomation Ltd offers ‘a green cremation’ which dissolves the deceased in an alkaline solution, essentially liquidizing them. The remains are heated at approximately 300C in a pressurized vessel containing a potassium hydroxide solution for around three hours. This reduces the body to skeletal remains which can then be processed into a white powder and given to the family. Since opening a branch in Florida, the company has processed 10 bodies, but since the new facility opened in Stillwater, Minnesota, the firm has overseen the liquidization of the remains of 20 individuals.
Speaking to BBC News, Sandy Sullivan, Chief Executive Officer of Resomation Ltd, said they had made some modifications to the system over the past few months: “We’ve developed the process to a stage where it’s running very well. I’m happy with where it is. There has been refinement in software changes and pipe work changes to make it quieter and things like that, but the machine is running very smoothly.”
Overall, Resomation claims that their cremation method produces a third less greenhouse gases than standard cremation and uses a seventh of the energy. The company hopes that its success so far will lead to contracts supplying 10-15 more machines in the US in the near future. Eight American states are reported to have passed legislation to permit the use of Resomation in their territories.
Via BBC News