COUNCIL: Natural burials could be offered in future

NATURAL burials could be a thing of the future after the council voted unanimously to investigate the feasibility of developing a site in the Fraser Coast.

Fraser Coast councillor Paul Truscott said if the initiative went ahead, it would be only the second natural burial site in Queensland.

Cr Truscott said the idea had been raised by Ruth White during an innovation pitch meeting.

"Natural burials provide a unique, dignified and environmentally sustainable alternative to traditional interment practices," Cr Truscott said.

The process of a natural burial involves the preparation of the deceased body without the use of embalming or chemical preservatives. "Using a biodegradable coffin, shroud, wicker or other natural method to be laid to rest to return to the earth naturally.

"Deceased bodies are generally laid to rest at a depth less than usual burials, of only approximately a metre, to allow for a faster decomposing process.

"Natural burials are typically in more of a native planting area, requiring less maintenance, generally in a diverse and self sustaining ecosystem with birds and wildlife."

The grave is not marked by traditional headstone, but replaced with native plantings and each grave is recorded with GPS locations to mark for loved ones.

"Currently, the Gold Coast is the only other location in Queensland where natural burials are taking place," Cr Truscott said.

"Land required for natural burials doesn't need to be extensive like a regular cemetery either.

"This is about providing people with an eco-friendly and sustainable alternative burial type and to reduce the impact of conventional burial and cremations on the environment. "