The gentle, eco-friendly alternative to flame cremation.
- A flameless cremation process that uses water instead of fire
- A gentle and respectful process
- No emissions of harmful greenhouse gasses or mercury
- Over 90% energy savings when compared to flame-based cremation
- 1/10 the carbon footprint of flame-based cremation
- On average 20% more ash remains returned to the family
Our Aqua Cremation process is an eco-friendly alternative to flame cremation and burial. It uses water instead of fire to return a body back to Mother Nature.
The Memorial Process
The traditional memorial ceremony and returning of the ashes remains unchanged. In fact, families receive more ash remains from this process, on average a 20% increase.
A Green Choice
Why this is considered an environmentally friendly choice?
There are no direct emissions of harmful greenhouse gasses or mercury to the atmosphere. It is very energy efficient – greater than 90% energy savings compared to flame cremation, with 1/10th of the carbon footprint.
What is the impact of the water usage?
Virtually zero. The Aqua Cremation process uses less water than a single household uses in one day. This includes all of the water used for the process, along with the clean water rinses of the final remains and vessel.
A Flameless Process
The scientific name for this water-based process is alkaline hydrolysis. It is the same process that occurs as part of nature’s course when a body is laid to rest in the soil. We use a combination of water flow, temperature, and alkalinity to accelerate nature’s process.
Who Supports It?
Trusted institutions have chosen this process for bodies donated to medical science for over 20 years. Most recently, the MAYO Clinic, UCLA Medical School, and UTSW Medical School have chosen this process for their willed body programs.
Families Have Expressed:
- They appreciate having a choice.
- They prefer a process that does not use fire or flame.
- They believe this to be a gentler option than flame-based cremation.
- They value the decreased environmental impact of the process.
Frequently Asked Questions
What actually happens?
With alkaline hydrolysis, an individual body is gently and respectfully in a clean, stainless steel vessel. A combination of water flow, temperature, and alkalinity are used to accelerate the natural process of tissue hydrolysis.
At the end of the process, the body has been returned to its natural form, dissolved in the water (our bodies are approximately 65% water to begin with). The only solid remains are the mineral bone remains.
Is the body dissolved in acid?
No, alkaline hydrolysis uses a catalyst called alkali, which is the chemical opposite of an acid.
Are the alkalis used in this process safe for the environment?
Yes. The water-based process is 95% water and 5% alkali. A combination of alkalis (sodium and potassium hydroxide) are used in the process to dissolve the body. The alkalis used in this process are the same alkalis used in common cosmetic products, body washes, shaving creams, and even in food preparation. At the end of the process, the chemical has been completely used and no longer remains in the water solution.
What happens to the water?
The water is returned to the ecosystem via the normal wastewater treatment facility, just as all funeral homes in the United States do during the embalming process. The alkaline hydrolysis process produces a completely sterile solution of amino acids, sugars, nutrients, salts, and soap in a water solution. These are the byproducts of natural decomposition.
Are the powdered ashes safe to handle?
Yes, the remains are 100% safe, pathogen and disease free. The ash that is returned to the family is simply bone mineral, or calcium phosphate. The ashes will keep in an urn or may be buried or scattered in a special place as some families choose to do.