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Young Irishwoman hopes to open Europe’s first ever eco crematorium in Ireland

Elizabeth Oakes said the ‘green burial’ procedure is more eco friendly than standard flame cremation

A young female Irish undertaker is hoping to open Europe’s first ever eco crematorium in Ireland.

Elizabeth Oakes, from Navan, Co Meath, has already earmarked three locations across the country and is in discussions with the council to introduce the service which is extremely popular in America.

The 33-year-old, who is the only person in Ireland with a degree in mortuary science, said the “green burial” procedure is more eco friendly than the standard flame cremation.

Water cremation, which costs roughly €1,585, is said to be better for the environment as it uses one-eighth of the energy that a flame cremation does and creates four times less carbon.

Speaking to Ryan Tubridy on RTE Radio One, Mother-of-three Elizabeth said: “Water cremation is a new eco friendly alternative to burial and flame cremation.

“It’s already very acceptable in the United States and hopefully we will have the first facility in Europe.

“There’s a vessel and the body is placed inside it. It’s 95% water and 5% potassium hydroxide which is an alkaline solution.

“That’s washed over the body and that dissolves the tissues of the body and whats left are the bone.

“Then we remove the bones, it’s similar to flame cremation. When you get flame cremation, or water cremation, the bones are then processed and crushed down and that’s what the family get returned.

“With our water process you actually get 30% more of your loved one back as all of the bones of the body are kept whereas with a flame cremation some of the small bones can completely disintegrate.

“It’s a very unique idea that’s very well accepted in the United States. I feel that it would be a great alternative to the current availability here at the moment.

“We have a number of investors interested in this proposition so we are looking forward to bringing it further.

“We have three locations earmarked for this and we are just working with the councils at the moment to get the paperwork in order.”

Elizabeth said that she likes being able to make someone look well for their loved-one at a funeral.

She concluded: “When they say they look god they look great, they look at peace or at rest or just like they did, that’s what you would hope for.

“I went to the states to get my degree in mortuary science which was a three year programme which covers all funeral service like embalming, restorative art, everything got to do with a funeral.

“I think i’m the only person in Ireland with a degree in mortuary science as you don’t need one here.”

Article: By Emma McMenamy Irish Mirror