China – Environmentally Friendly Death

Not just Environmentally friendly but wallet friendly too, the chinese governement is trying to encourage the "Online Funeral".  Taking inspiration from countries like Australia and New Zealand where these online funerals have been a success, their goal is to "avoid a waste of social and natural resources."  The deceased is cremated, saving on grave space, the ashes discarded and  their life celebrated via virtual cemetery.  The custom in China is that they pay tribute to their lost ancestors at the annual Qingming Festival that occurs on April 5, decorating the tombs and offering food, wine and tea.  With the new Online Funeral, any pictures and tributes like eulogies are posted online.

But are the Chinese people ready for such a change in their tradition? Dou Yupei, Vice Minister of Civil Affairs, said, “More members of the public are willing to remove undesirable funeral customs and transform some traditions.” He also noted that statistics show a preference towards cremation versus a conventional burial. Plus online funerals save land and wood, not to mention boatloads of money.

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