When you think about death, what sort of thoughts come to mind?
If you’re like most people, you probably think about family and (if you believe in one) the afterlife. Will my spouse and kids be okay? Did I lead a good life? Will I see my deceased loved ones again?
A company named Recompose in Washington State is betting that your biggest question will be, “How can I minimize my corpse’s environmental impact?” This is the same state that has Seattle in it, so it’s not a bad bet. Now, the Seattle Times reports that Washington has become the first state to legalize human composting.
Though few details are provided, the company’s website envisions a facility in which a single corpse is placed into a large vessel. Inside the vessel are thermophilic (heat-loving) microbes, and the internal environment (e.g., moisture and the amount of carbon, oxygen, and nitrogen) is tightly controlled. At the end of the process, which takes about a month, the corpse is converted into odorless soil. (And you can take some home, if you’d like!)