Sign In

Green Burial

The City of Lethbridge is preparing to open a Green Burial block at Royal View Memorial Cemetery.

Tentative Opening Fall of 2019

A green burial minimizes the impact on our environment by returning a body to the earth where it can decompose naturally and contribute to the growth of new life. For many, this concept combines the spiritual integrity of the past, with the environmental ideals of the present.

Decomposition is thought to be nature's way of recycling a body. We take energy throughout our lives, and when we die, a green burial allows us to give it back.  

How is green burial different?

A green burial means no embalming. With the use of refrigeration, topical application of environmentally friendly soaps, lotions and disinfection agents, the human remains can still be properly prepared and dressed for a dignified viewing.

The remains are then wrapped in a natural and biodegradable cloth and placed directly into a grave.  No grave liner or casket is needed. Alternatively, the wrapped remains can be placed into a container made of sustainable and fully biodegradable materials.

Once the burial procedure is completed, the surface of the grave will be seeded with a local indigenous grass mix, as closely matching the surrounding prairie grass as possible. This area will not be mowed or watered, it will be treated like a natural prairie area.  For this reason, individual grave visitation is discouraged to allow the grass to both grow and survive.  There will be designated walking paths available for this purpose.

Using local, naturally sourced material, a memorial will be placed in the green burial space where simple inscriptions can be made.

The green burial site will be planned so that the space is most efficiently used with a minimal amount of disturbance to the space.

More information on green burials can also be found at http://www.greenburialcanada.ca/.

To inquire about green burials in Lethbridge contact the cemeteries department at: (403) 320-3008 or email cemetery@lethbridge.ca.