A Los Angeles lawmaker wants California to allow for human composting, an eco-friendly alternative to traditional burial or cremation in which the dead are turned into soil.
The state of Washington became the first state to allow human composting when Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee signed a law last year permitting the practice.
“I would love to be a tree one day,” said Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia (D-Bell Gardens), who introduced Assembly Bill 2592 to allow for human composting, or “natural organic reduction” as the upstart industry calls the proces. “I think this is about giving people another option.”
Washington’s law goes into effect on May 1, with a Seattle business called Recompose preparing to open a funeral home that offers the service in early 2021. Recompose’s process involves placing a body into a vessel with wood chips, alfalfa and straw, allowing it to be decomposed by microbes and reduced to a nutrient-dense soil in about a month.
The end result is about a cubic yard of soil per person, which is then returned to families or donated to conservation land for use.
The Catholic Church came out in opposition to the Washington law, saying that human composting doesn’t show proper respect for the dead. The newly introduced California bill has not yet been scheduled for a hearing in the state Capitol.
Full story at LA Times.