Unacceptable discharge of mercury from crematoriam

Sunday, 24 July, 2005

The UK government's concern over the toxicity of mercury and the increasing emissions of the element from crematoria has led to the implementation of steps to sharply reduce this source of pollution derived from fillings in teeth, reckoned to be responsible for up to 16% of all UK emissions.

The Federation of British Cremation Authorities and the Cremation Society are working on a nationwide burden sharing system, although it will be open to crematoria to enter into any burden sharing arrangements which meet the 50% reduction requirements. "By 2020, crematoria will be by far the biggest single contribute to mercury emissions in this country. Something must be done. Our decision - on which we consulted widely - strikes a balance between the concerns about cost to crematoria and the need to control emissions of a substance which can damage human health and the environment," according to the UK Ministry of Health.

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