With attitudes shifting against traditional burials toward more cost effective, alternative methods of death rites, such as cremation, it makes sense that new methods continue to develop. One method that is slowly beginning to grow in interest is resomation.
What is resomation?
Similar to cremation, resomation uses heat to break down the body, but unlike cremation it doesn’t use fire; resomation uses water. The body is placed in a tank and filled it with water and naturally occurring alkaline hydrolysis that is heated by steam for three hours.
The heated solution solution strips away and dissolves the flesh, leaving brittle bones that are pulverized into ash, similar to cremains.
What are the advantages of resomation
Resomation is considered more environmentally friendly than cremation because the process doesn’t emit CO2 or mercury into the atmosphere. It takes takes 75 percent less energy to perform a resomation than a cremation.
The leftover liquid solution is drained and completely safe to be introduced into the earth as nutrients for grass and plant, and the pulverized bones are safe to scatter as you would with cremated ashes.
What are the disadvantages of resomation
The largest drawback of resomation is its very concept. To some, the idea of their loved one being dissolved–essentially melted–into a liquid state that is then drained into the earth sounds unpleasant. Plus, others may be uncomfortable with the notion of using the dissolved solution as nutrients for plants that may in turn be consumed by humans.
The other drawback is its largely unadvertised price estimates. Since it makes up such a small market, resomation services may cost more to perform than a cremation.
As far as its popularity is concerned, resomation still has a long way to go. It took the western world, especially the United States, a long time to embrace cremation as a viable option for disposing of the dead, and it seems like a new idea like resomation will take a similar length of time to gain popularity. Unlike cremation though, it doesn’t seem like resomation will have any religious opposition in its early stages since the Catholic Church has already given its approval.
Are you interested in learning more about alternative death rituals to traditional burials? Heartland Cremation can help provide you with the guidance and planning you need for arranging the cremation of your loved one. Family-owned and operated, Heartland Cremation serves the Kansas City area, including the communities of Overland Park, Leawood, Prairie Village, Lenexa, and Olathe. Please contact us to discuss your cremation needs today.