Buy the book that prepares you for the unexpected.
Now available everywhere books are sold.
Learn More
In Case You Get Hit by a Bus: How to Organize Your Life Now for When You're Not Around Later

Guide: Finding A Green Cemetery

This article on funeral planning is provided by Everplans — The web's leading resource for planning and organizing your life. Create, store and share important documents that your loved ones might need. Find out more about Everplans »

green forest

Many conventional cemeteries are now offering green burial options.

What You Need to Know

The Green Burial Council has developed a rating system for green cemeteries and burial grounds, and has divided the types of green burial locations into three categories:

Hybrid Burial Ground

A conventional cemetery that allows for burial without an outer burial container and allows for burial in any type of container.

Natural Burial Ground

A setting that prohibits outer burial containers, the burial of bodies embalmed with toxic chemicals, and burial containers made of anything other than natural materials. In addition, Natural Burial Grounds must have a pesticide-free Integrated Pest Management system.

Conservation Burial Ground

In addition to meeting the requirements of the Natural Burial Ground, a Conservation Burial Ground must be run by a either a government agency or a nonprofit conservation organization with a legal right to long-term custody of the burial ground.

If you have a cemetery that you’d like to use but you’re not sure about their green offerings, be in touch with the cemetery directly to find out. For Natural and Conservation Burial Grounds, you’ll likely have to find a burial ground that is specifically dedicated to environmentally friendly practices. Though the Green Burial Council has set the standards for green burial and has certified providers, there may be cemeteries with green offerings that are not certified by the Green Burial Council. Be sure to ask the cemeteries you’re interested in about their burial requirements and practices.

Green Burial Council

The Green Burial Council is an independent, nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting environmentally friendly practices in the funeral industry, and has set the standards for green cemeteries in the United States. Click here for the list of options.

State-By-State Health, Legal, And End-Of-Life Resources

Funeral Planning

Related Topics