Cemeteries are extremely important to their communities, and it is vital for cemetery owners to ensure that they don't become hazardous for said communities. Cemetery owners need to have a risk management plan in place in order to identify and mitigate issues like cemetery pollution. This type of pollution can come from many sources.
As bodies decompose, water, salt, biological materials and ammoniacal nitrogen are all released into the ground. It is essential to prevent these chemicals from leaching into nearby groundwater.
In addition to the pollution caused by the bodies themselves, the formaldehyde used to preserve them can also contribute to cemetery pollution. Formaldehyde is considered hazardous waste by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and it's important that cemetery workers be protected from overexposure.
The metals, wood preservatives, varnishes, and sealant in a coffin can all leach into soil over time. Good cemetery risk management involves finding ways to avoid or reduce damage to the environment by these substances.
There are many things that go on behind the scenes of cemetery work. One important consideration for owners is how to reduce cemetery pollution from various sources. This will go a long way to making sure the cemetery benefits the community for years to come.