Eco-friendly group funeral service held to save space

A group funeral service for seniors who had no spouses or children was held in Qingpu District today with an eco-friendly and land-saving burial.

A group funeral for seniors who had no spouses or children was held in Qingpu District today with an eco-friendly and land-saving burial.

Members of the Shanghai Cancer Recovery Club and neighbors of these seniors said farewell at the Fushouyuan Cemetery.

Biodegradable urns were buried under trees, with each taking up only 0.47 square meters of space. This type of service has been held for 35 such seniors so far.

"Eco-friendly burial is a decent way to bid farewell and it shows respect for life," said Bao Jie, deputy director of the funeral and interment management department of the Shanghai Civil Affairs Bureau.

Eco-friendly burials have been promoted intensively in Shanghai in recent years to reduce the demand for land and to curb the rising prices of tombs. Many cemeteries in the city face a shortage of land and have to put a limit on land use.

Zhuanqiao Qinyuan, a cemetery in Minhang District, has one of the smallest areas of usable land remaining — just over half a hectare.

The latest eco-friendly funeral service was held ahead of the winter solstice, which is a key time for Chinese people to pay their respects to the departed by visiting their tombs. This year's winter solstice falls on December 22.


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