Success: Sustainable Burial Alternative Legalized

Target: Jay Inslee, Governor of Washington

Goal: Applaud the state’s legalization of human composting.

Washington has just become the first state to adopt a burial method that is more friendly to the environment than the current options. The bill’s sponsor Sen. Jamie Pedersen stated that “It’s about time we apply some technology, allow some technology to be applied to this universal human experience … because we think that people should have the freedom to determine for themselves how they’d like their body to be disposed of.”

The law will take effect in May 2020, and will allow bodies to be placed in a receptacle, along with organic material like wood chips and straw, to aid in speeding up the natural transition of human remains into soil. According to Troy Hottle, a postdoctoral fellow at the Environmental Protection Agency, human composting, also known as recomposition, uses just an eighth of the energy needed for cremation and saves more than one metric ton of carbon dioxide per individual comparatively.

Various petitions such as this one have been circulating online demanding a third burial option be made available to people. Advocates claim that composting of human remains is appealing due to both ecological and financial reasons. Sign below to praise this revolutionary decision.


Dear Governor Inslee,

Thank you for providing the people of Washington with an eco-friendly burial alternative. By signing SB 5001 into law, the environment will be at less risk of suffering from pollution. While burial takes up land, which is becoming scarce in cities, and cremation produces significant greenhouse gases, human composting is a great sustainable option for dealing with body remains.

Following the law’s enacment, demands on space needed after a person dies will see a reduction. Pollution from chemicals pumped into buried bodies that can seep into groundwater will be decreased as well. Carbon emissions from cremation will be curbed too. Thank you for making a positive change for the state.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Paul Mocan

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