A couple has created nature-friendly burial pods that can potentially replace the depressing sight of a cemetery with a lush green forest. These biodegradable coffins could help a seed blossom into a beautiful tree, thereby allowing one source of life to spark and nurture another.
The Capsula Mundi project, envisioned and crafted by designers Anna Citelli and Raoul Bretzel in Italy, has already been developed. Unfortunately, it is stuck in red tape as it is against Italian law to bury someone in this manner. However, that hasn’t stopped the duo from putting up their design for display in hopes that people will use their burial pods instead of coffins to help Mother Nature.
“No matter what your faith or if you believe in after-life, these organic burial pods that turn loved ones into trees make the idea of death a little more comforting.”
Once the project has gained legal status, the designers hope their burial pods will create cemeteries full of trees instead of tombstones. Though ornate, tombstones do nothing but occupy space and prevent Mother Nature from reclaiming what was hers to begin with. These tree-laden cemeteries would hopefully be transformed into parks that could be referred to as “memory forests,” allowing the living descendants to remember their loved ones in the form of giant trees.
These burial pods are essentially biodegradable caskets, however, they resemble an egg. The dead body is encapsulated into a fetal position – the same one in which a human is born – and the pod is sealed. Once the burial pod is placed sufficiently deep inside the earth, a seed is placed above it. This will allow the seed to draw nutrients that will slowly keep seeping out of the decomposing pod.
The designer duo further added that it is a lot cheaper and eco-friendly to bury the dead in these pods instead of overpriced coffins that do little for mother earth. Coffins require wood which is procured by cutting down trees. The eco-friendly burial pods — which dissolve a lot sooner in the earth — are made from all renewable and biodegradable materials, including starch plastic and seasonal plants, such as potatoes and corn.
A tree that takes 10 to 40 years to mature is chopped down to make a coffin that only serves a purpose for two or three days. These burial pods not only save many trees, they help nurture many more. Interestingly, the duo promises one can select different types of trees.
“The tree is chosen when the person is alive, relatives and friends look after it when death occurs. A cemetery will no longer be full of tombstones and will become a sacred forest,”
Currently struggling to bring about a change in the legislation, perhaps the designer duo should introduce their burial pods to the other parts of the world.