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Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Impact of Traditional Hindu Funeral Pyre to the Environment

Looking for ideas on your essay on environmental issues or an essay on global warming or how human activities impact the environment? A good essay topic on global warming is the impact of human practices in observance of customs and tradition on the environment.  One of these activities is the traditional Hindu way of burying the dead.

The traditional Hindu funeral pyre is done by burning a man in open ground.  The cremation is said to be necessary so that soul can be finally separated and released from the body. 

While this Hindu belief is not being questioned, the activity definitely has adverse impact on the environment.

1. Burning the body of a person in open ground requires a lot of trees to be chopped and burned for this activity leading to deforestation.  According to Mokshda, a Delhi-based NGO seeking to reduce the impact on the environment of the funeral pyres, fifty to sixty million trees are burned during cremations every year in India.  When trees are chopped it will take years before the trees that have been chopped down can be replaced because growing trees take a long time. 

2. When trees are burned about 8 million tones of carbon dioxide or greenhouse gas emissions is released into the air. 

3. After the burning, large quantities of ash is left which are eventually thrown into rivers which affect the level of toxicity in the water.  The ashes thrown in the waters affect all marine life. 

Right now, efforts are being made to create an alternative system that will comply with Hindu religious belief and also protect the environment using the Green Cremation System which helps generate minimum air and water pollution.  

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