Water Cremation could be a solution for Cemetery pressure

Water Cremation could be a solution for Cemetery pressure

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The Burial and Cremation Act 1964 consultation will be ending on October 31, and Water Cremation Aotearoa has a solution for the growing pressure on cemeteries.

Water Cremation Aotearoa New Zealand spokesperson Debbie Richards says as the deadline approaches, for several years, they’ve heard about the pressure on cemeteries and the issue has been raised again regarding Karori.

“Water cremation has massive environmental benefits, and as a society focused on environmental sustainability with climate change being a major concern, we believe New Zealanders would be very happy to have this option. We want the recycled water that is left at the end of the process, to go back into the land, in a place that family (and others) can visit and enjoy,” said Debbie Richards.


Water cremation, Resomation or Alkaline Hydrolysis is the process of dissolving a deceased body in water, but it isn’t currently legal in New Zealand. However, In parts of the US and Canada, it is legal.

Some have suggested that plots should be rented so they can be freed up after a certain time but providing more of an environmentally sustainable way of caring for the bodies of our loved ones is ‘key’ to the business, but there are other important advantages.

Debbie Richards says New Zealanders have an opportunity to ‘have a say’ on what they want in the management of a dead loved one and where their body finally rests. 

“I visited the US and the UK late last year where these machines have been developed, to see them working,” says Richards. “and we are in the early stages of discussions with Ngāi Tahu. It’s essential to recognise Tangata Whenua as Kaitiaki of the land, something important to all of us. We believe this is truly the way of the future,” concluded Debbie Richards.

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