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Re: P2 for funeral homes
- Subject: Re: P2 for funeral homes
- From: Listman <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- Date: Thu, 26 Jan 2006 10:42:25 -0600
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At 05:23 PM 1/25/2006, Schleyer, Laura wrote:
P2 brothers n' sisters!
Have any of you ever worked on tech
assistance for funeral homes/mortuaries? I found one 1995 study on
Formaldehyde Use Reduction, do you know of any other good ones out there?
There was a discussion on P2Tech about four years ago about environmental
issues associated with crematoria, which are slightly different than
funeral homes, but certainly related. At the time, I did a search for one
of our staff people on the issue too. Here's what I found:
A search of the P2Tech archives
turned up the following (in response to a message originally posted by
"Robert B. Pojasek"
Tue, 29 Dec 1998 15:42:47 -0800
"Robert B. Pojasek"
The problem that I understand is that the fillings in the deceased
are heated causing some mercury to be volatilized. Crematoria
not have air pollution control devices. I understand that in
the morticians have to pull the teeth prior to the baking. This
pollution prevention at work. I do not know what other types of
are released from the naked point source (often in close proximity to
neighborhood). Sort of conjures up scenes from
Tue, 29 Dec 1998 11:16:06 -0500
I would expect some of the same issues associated with medical
incineration. EPA has published air standards for medical waste
incineration. The background documents for this standard are at
EPA also included
crematoria in their Mercury point source inventory in their report
Congress. There may be some unique mercury related issues.Also we have
number of articles related to medical waste at our Website
Go to search databases and then to RLIBY. We can
send you any articles you find relevant.
RE: crematoria and medical waste
Tue, 29 Dec 1998 16:34:25 -0500
Follow up to my previous message: I spoke to Rick Copeland at EPA who
up the effort on the medical waste incineration standards for air,
medical waste incinerators(MWI) and he indicated that the issues are
transferrable to crematoria. In fact, crematoria are specifically
from the MWI standards. MWI burn a lot of plastics and contaminated
which contribute substantial chlorine to the formation of HCl and
dioxins and heavy metals. These constituents pose the greater air
Tissue matter which is 96% water does not pose these kinds of problems.
EPA air program is looking into crematoria as part of other waste
such as combustion of chicken carcasses. He expects mercury from
being a problem unique to crematoria since it volatilizes at low
temperatures and is not easily removed. Ironically the chlorine levels
MWI result in the formation of HgCl2 which can be removed from the air
easily but ends up in the water.
"Kirsten Sinclair Rosselot"
Tue, 29 Dec 1998 21:17:02 -0800
"Kirsten Sinclair Rosselot"
According to the L&E document for dioxins and furans ("Locating
Estimating Air Emissions from Sources of Dioxins and Furans
EPA, May 1996), crematories are a source of dioxin and furan
Incomplete combustion, don't you know.... I've wondered if maybe it
the materials burned with the bodies (clothing, containers, etc.)
caused the dioxin and furan emissions, or perhaps things like
hips made of plastic. Emissions could depend on factors such as
composition, too, I suspect.
The quantities of dioxins and furans emitted are tiny -- on the order of
to the minus 13 kilograms per pound of body. However, even tiny
these compounds can be cause for concern.
Wed, 06 Jan 1999 13:51:10 -0500
Did anyone check
It's the home page of Elder-Davis,
a manufacturer of cremation containers and caskets.
Take a look at
discuss emissions testing done in 1992-93 in respone to Florida DER
attempts to regulate materials used in cremation containers. Various
of containers were tested and stack sampling was done for CO, HCl,
VOC, and SO2. Data are provided on this page, but FLDER may be a
I also did some searching on the web and found the following
Environmental Effects Main Crematorium Concern
Dioxinlike Components in Incinerator Fly Ash: A Comparison between
Chemical Analysis Data and
Results from a Cell Culture Bioassay (article abstract)
Inventory of Sources of Dioxin in the United States (see section 3.4
beginning on page 3-37 for information on crematoria. A look at the
References section at the end may also yield relevant journal
Emission Tests Provide Positive Result for Cremation Industry
EPA Publishes New Mercury Data for Crematories
Making Funeral Pyres Eco-Friendly (India)
There are also green products available for the industry:
Yes, this is what it sounds like.
Environment Protection Coffin
An environment protection coffin is constructed to include a coffin body
made by folding up a patterned sheet material into shape, which patterned
sheet material is formed of an outer shell, an inner shell, and at least
one intermediate lining shell sandwiched in between the outer shell and
the inner shell.
ECOCEMETERY OFFERS NATURAL BURIAL IN WOODLAND PRESERVE Conventional
burial in the United States bears a resemblance to toxic waste disposal.
The Environmental Protection Agency has raised concerns about discharge
of embalming fluids from funeral homes into septic and sewage systems.
Caskets and vaults may contaminate soil and groundwater by leaching
varnishes, preservatives, sealants and metals. Most cemeteries are kept
verdant by regular applications of herbicides and pesticides and are
"beautified" with turf and invasive exotic species. But in
Westminster, South Carolina, Billy and Kimberly Campbell have founded
Memorial Ecosystems, the first contemporary cemetery in the nation
dedicated to ecosystem preservation while providing a lower-cost burial
alternative. At the company's pilot "ecocemetery," unembalmed
bodies are buried in biodegradable cardboard cremation boxes or simple
pine coffins in a native woodland. Plots are sited close to the trail to
avoid visitors' trampling the woodland vegetation. Where topsoil must be
removed, it is replaced after burial. Grave markers are simple
inscriptions on stones mostly found on the property. The Campbells will
allow an average of 30 graves per acre, compared to 1,000 or more per
acre in some contemporary cemeteries. While burial requirements differ
from state to state, they are less constricting than one might expect. In
South Carolina, for example, not even a box is legally required. More:
<http://www.memorialecosystems.com/> . Landscape Architecture, Oct 2002, p 74, by J. William Thompson. [Source: GreenClips.com
I also found a list of funeral related association web sites at http://healthweb.org/browse.cfm?subjectid=55. Some of these groups may have environmental information posted there.
I hope this helps.
Laura L. Barnes, Librarian (v) (217) 333-8957
Illinois Waste Management & Research Center (f) (217) 333-8944
One East Hazelwood Drive, Champaign IL 61820 e-mail:firstname.lastname@example.org
Check out our web page at http://www.wmrc.uiuc.edu/library/
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