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RE: [greenyes] composting coffin
I read STIFF over the summer.  It's a great read.
Debbie Rubin Fields

From: EcoWaters@no.address
To: greenyes-digest-help@no.address, greenyes@no.address
CC: roach@no.address
Subject: [greenyes] composting coffin
Date: Wed, 10 Dec 2003 11:49:45 EST

Nancy, thanks for that link to the great article. I will definitely get the
book, Stiff. I had to laugh when author Mary Roach says, "As always, California
will be first." Since I've moved from Boston to the San Francisco area, I've
been marveling at how behind the east coast times things are here in many
ways. OK, but probably not as far as reuse of hard goods.

Anyway, I've heard of a German operation that does all of this, minus the
freezing and shattering. Freezing a body and breaking it up might use far less
energy than burning a body that's 80 to 90 percent water, but I wonder if it is
far more efficient to simply insert composting bacteria and worms. As we know
from the journal Biocycle, large fleshy bodies are composted every day (cows)
with a five-day total decomposition rate with aerobic hot composting. Interred
where there is high elevation (too high to reach groundwater) but shallow and
in the zone of aeration and plant roots, a body could get the biological
treatment and nutrient recycling we'd like, just as ecological wastewater
recycling is achieved.

morbidly yours and always interested in nutrient recycling,
Carol Steinfeld


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