Move to tackle a lack of burial space and environmental concerns over use of carbon dioxide
Being freeze dried and smashed into little pieces sounds like the stuff of sci-
But it is one of two methods of dealing with our dearly departed that could soon be available from a funeral director near you.
And in keeping with sci-
The process – called promession, or cryomation – involves using liquid nitrogen to chill the body to -
A magnet then removes metal objects such as fillings and artificial limbs, leaving a sterile powder – giving a whole new meaning to ‘ashes to ashes, dust to dust’.
The second method is even more disturbing.
Known as resomation, it sees bodies placed in silk bags and submerged in an alkaline solution that has been heated to 160c. Flesh, organs and bones all dissolve under the onslaught, leaving behind a combination of green-
Imagining new ways of dispensing with the dead has long pre-
Soylent Green, released in 1973 and starring Charlton Heston, was set in an over-
Another classic 1970s sci-
All must die when they reach the age of 30 by taking part in a Carrousel ceremony, where people are picked up by an invisible force and vaporised by an electric arc.
What promession and resomation share with these grisly endings is that they are being marketed as sustainable ways of disposing of bodies.
The average cremated body emits 573lb of carbon dioxide, while there is growing concern over the dwindling number of burial spaces.
Dozens of councils are understood to have expressed an interest in the processes, although at present only burials or cremations are licensed in the UK.
Cambridge council recently received a report from bereavement services manager Tracy Lawrence which recommended maintaining a ‘watching brief’ over the new methods.
Promession was invented by a Swedish biologist in 1999. The first promession facilities, known as Promatoria, are due to open later this year in the UK, Sweden and South Korea. The process has already been approved in six U.S. states.
Scottish firm Resomation Ltd is in talks with British authorities about introducing the funerals here.
Funeral services are a £2billion-
Proposals for the new processes will be discussed by Cambridge council on January 13.
But Simon Kightley, chairman of the community services scrutiny committee, said introducing them would depend largely on public opinion.
The crematorium has made £276,000 profit in the past five years but only picks up £44 per funeral service compared to a whopping £244 which can be charged by private operators.
Plans for a super-