Julie Laurin didn't really think about her own demise until she got hooked on Six Feet Under, the popular HBO TV series. Always an environmentalist, she knew that funerals did not have to be the big expensive affairs most are today.
"I have never had a desire for show," she says. "So an expensive casket and being pumped full of chemicals wasn't attractive to me at all. To be buried as-is, under a tree or to have flowers planted above my corpse is the most perfect and natural way for me to go."To paraphrase General Douglas MacArthur: Old eco-freaks never die, they just turn into compost.
The 33 year old from just outside of Sudbury, Ont., is part of a new breed of environmentally- and cost-conscious consumers who are taking a new approach to their final moments. It's becoming increasingly common for final wishes to be reflective of one's personality and the way they lived on earth. After all, it's your body, and what happens to it is among the most personal choices you can make.
As this conversation becomes more common, dozens of companies are popping up across North America more than willing to oblige.
Brian McGarry owns an Ottawa funeral home where he is investing hundreds of thousands of dollars in a resomation machine. Sometimes called "bio-cremation", resomation uses a fraction of the energy that cremation does, and the end product is actually beneficial for the environment.
"It is environmentally friendly," he says. "And there's no emissions."...