New York state has announced that it will now be allowing composting humans. There are a handful of states in the US that have allowed the composting of humans legally. Now, New York state has joined this list with its announcement. Washington allowed human composting in 2019 legally, to become the first US state to do so. Other states which have allowed human composting include Colorado, Oregon, Vermont, and California. Kathy Hochul, the governor of New York state officially signed the document on behalf of the state council to become the sixth state in the country where human composting is legal. Kathy Hochul is a member of the Democratic party in the US.
Human composting is a controversial topic for many countries as it contradicts the religious side of burial rituals. But the environmental benefits and the satisfaction of contributing to the nourishment of nature and the environment have contributed to the increased popularity of human composting in many societies across the world. Human composting is the natural way of reducing human remains organically. This is done using biodegradable materials with which the body is placed in a vessel to allow its degradation into nutrient-rich soil which has a great cultivation ability. This soil is then either delivered to the family of the deceased person or donated to the cultivation sites. The degradation process is potent enough to even turn the bones into soil, although it takes a much longer time for the bones to decompose. Because of this, it often happens that the delivered soil contains small pieces of bone fragments. There are many areas where this process contradicts the religious burial of a person’s body after their death. During the cremation process, which many religions follow, a significant amount of carbon-rich fuel is used which contributes to the greenhouse gasses that are present in the environment leading to global warming. But with the help of human composting, instead of generating such greenhouse gasses, the composted nutrient-rich soil can be used for cultivating trees, which helps reduce the concentration of greenhouse gasses. Because of this, the awareness of human composting has increased over the years alongside the awareness of the environment and climate change. This has propelled the companies which have started doing their businesses of human composting.
Recompose is one of the well-known firms that are active in the business of human composting, which also bears the legal authority to do so. Many other firms are active in this business, which has welcomed the decision of the New York state to allow human composting. Recompose has stated several times that human composting can effectively reduce the carbon footprints which are tied to religious cremation and burial. Another such firm, Return Home has also said similar things regarding the importance of human composting in reducing the carbon footprint. Return Home said that the decision of New York state to allow human composting is a huge step towards achieving nationwide green death care. On the other hand, this has indeed affected the religious institutions in the state. Churches in New York are not happy regarding this decision as according to them and the ethics, human bodies should not be treated like some household waste.