torsdag 11. april 2019

Can't afford to die': China embraces eco burials as plot prices outstrip housing

This week, seven families laid the remains of their loved ones to rest in the Tianshou cemetery on the outskirts of Beijing. But these were burials with a difference. The families rode in golf carts made to look like hearses and scattered flower petals over a small plot of grass where biodegradable jars containing the ashes of their relatives were buried. The area reserved for the green burials can fit more 2,000 of the jars, buried in layers in the ground, without any especially delineated plots. The same area would only hold about 500 to 600 traditional grave plots, according to Tianshou.

Officials have been trying to promote “eco burials” like these as Chinese cities run out of land to bury their dead and the price of grave plots continues to soar, often surpassing the price per square metre of an apartment. There’s a common saying: “Can’t afford to die, can’t afford to be buried.”