(CNN) – Relatives gather to say goodbye Desmond Tutu, the hero of the struggle against apartheid, at a private funeral at St. George’s Cathedral, where his remains are buried in Cape Town and interred.
At his request, the Nobel Peace Prize laureate’s body underwent a hydration process – considered a greener alternative to cremation – the Anglican Church in South Africa confirmed to CNN on Saturday.
What process did Desmond Tutu choose?
Aquamation is a water-based process whose scientific name is “alkaline hydrolysis,” in which “a combination of smooth water flow, temperature, and alkalinity is used to accelerate the decomposition of organic matter” when the body settles into the soil, according to Bio- Response Solutions, a US company that specializes in this process.
The company’s website says the process “uses 90% less energy than burning flames and emits no harmful greenhouse gases.”
How is it?
According to the Cremation Association of North America (CANA), an international nonprofit organization, alkaline hydrolysis is sometimes called flameless cremation.
The body is placed in an alkaline lysis machine, made up of an airtight chamber filled with a solution made of water and alkaline chemicals. The room heats up, as a result of which the body liquefies and leaves only the bones, According to the CANA website.
Once the bones are dry, they can be crushed. “The process produces approximately 32% more cremated remains than llama cremations and may require a larger urn,” according to CANA.
Desmond Tutu, environmental advocate
Tutu was a strong advocate for the environment: he gave many speeches and wrote many articles about the need for action to tackle the climate crisis.
In 2007, A . wrote Article titled “This fatal satisfaction” For The Guardian, he addressed the alarming impact of climate change on the global south and on poor communities, as much of North America and Europe have yet to face the harsh weather conditions caused by that country’s climate emergency.
In addition to ordering an eco-friendly alternative to cremating her body, Toto also took other steps to ensure her funeral was as modest as her way of life: her body was placed in a simple pine coffin, which was “the cheapest available” in his home. request, said its foundations.
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