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NH Lawmakers Approve Chemical Cremation

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CONCORD, NH (CBS/AP) – New Hampshire’s House gave preliminary approval to a new idea in mortuary science that would allow human bodies to be dissolved into a soapy liquid as an alternative to cremation.

The process involves chemicals, heat and pressure to reduce the remains to bone residue. It’s an idea that has already caught on in several other states like Maine, California and Florida.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Lana Jones reports

Proponents of the new technology say it is more environmentally sound and costs less than traditional burials. They now want New Hampshire to regulate the practice like cremation.

Peter Morin of the New Hampshire Funeral Directors Association says his group has no objections to the process.

“The process would be the same, the penalties would be the same, oversight by the state would be the same,” Morin said. “We want the citizens of New Hampshire to have a choice and this is a newer technology and there seems to be growing interest in it.”

The liquid remains of the body are sent into the waste water system. The bone residue that remains is given to the family for burial or to scatter, Morin said.

This is the third time lawmakers have considered chemical cremation. In 2006, they voted to allow it but reversed their decision the next year.

An attempt to lift the ban failed in 2009.

(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)
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