Where is Green Burial Available in Canada?

What is Green Burial?

Green or natural burial is the process of human disposition with the least environmental consequences, while encouraging greater land stewardship. Bodies are not prepared using chemical embalming fluids, are placed in simple shrouds or biodegradable caskets, and concrete vaults are not used, nor are traditional markers (headstones & footstones). In Canada, green burial cemeteries come in three forms: full or conservation, hybrid and green-friendly (our term).

Full or Conservation Green Cemeteries are cemeteries that only practice green burial, or despite the debate surrounding the environmental impact of cremation, the interment of eco-friendly urns.

Hybrid Cemeteries are 'traditional' cemeteries that offer green burial in designated spaces. These spaces are set apart from the rest of the cemetery, and follow the guidelines for green or natural burial.

Green-Friendly Cemeteries are cemeteries that do not offer a dedicated green burial section, but are making efforts to offer environmentally friendly options. This could include the lack of cement vault or embalming fluids, and the choice of simple pine casket, or burial shroud. We will be updating our list as we find more green-friendly cemeteries in Canada.

Green burial often has an additional ecological aspect where the grounds/graves are planted with only native, beneficial species that are not chemically or mechanically managed, and where optimum land and water use guidelines are in place. There are at least two green burial organizations in Canada: the Green Burial Society of Canada, and the Natural Burial Association. The Green Burial Council, operates in both Canada and the United States, and offers environmental certificates for funeral homes, cemeteries and product manufacturers.

According to the Green Burial Society of Canada, the following five (5) criteria MUST be present for a burial to qualify as a green burial:
The BODY: Remains for green burial must be in a ‘natural’ state so as to permit for natural, unimpeded decomposition. (Arterial embalming, in any form, of a body is not permitted.)

The CONTAINER: Remains for burial must be enclosed in a fully biodegradable shroud, container or casket. (Ideally, ‘Containers’ will be made from locally sourced, sustainable fabrics and materials.)

The BURIAL: Remains will be buried directly into the earth. (Use of an outer burial container -e.g., rough-box, grave liner or vault of any type is not permitted.)

The MEMORIAL: If permitted, PREFERABLY in the form of a communal memorial. (if individual memorials are permitted, they must be minimally intrusive to the landscape and made from locally sourced materials.)

The CEMETERY: Has active and ongoing community outreach, to provide and advocate for Green Burial service practices in the community. Advocacy for green burial shall be made in good faith and without reservation or the creation of barriers, such as restrictive by laws or pricing that is intended to discourage families from choosing a green burial option.

FURTHER, a cemetery with this designation will strive to use electric or fuel-efficient cemetery vehicles and/or use bio-fuels in standard cemetery equipment providing services; have a program for cemetery wide, on-site recycling and/or composting of landscape & organic debris, and general waste; and continuously engage in cemetery wide, ongoing ‘greening’ initiatives.

Embalming laws in Canada

"Is embalming required by law in Canada?" No. None of the provinces and territories require embalming. Some provinces do have rules pertaining to the length of time a body can be unembalmed for a viewing, before embalming would be necessary, but that is it (we're looking at you Quebec). Nothing would prevent someone from having a funeral at home with an unembalmed body.

Where Can I Have a Green Burial in Canada?

Whereas green burial is being quickly adopted throughout the United States, Canada currently lags behind. Only 2 Canadian provinces have full green burial sites, and most provinces and territories have none whatsoever. We called the following municipalities and cemeteries to confirm their green offerings.

"I want a green burial but there are no sites in my province, what can I do?"

If your province is lacking a green burial site, we've included the contact information for municipal or provincial cemetery management offices. Since green burial is legal in all provinces and territories, it takes consumer demand to see any change. A call to a government cemetery management office, or your local cemetery, can make all the difference. Encourage your friends and family to do the same, or propose a green burial site during local municipality meetings.

Many funeral homes in Canada can help facilitate green burial services, including My Alternatives in the West coast, and Eco Cremation & Burial Services in Ontario. Some funeral homes in Ontario, Quebec and Saskatchewan also offer Bio-Cremation. Lastly, many cemeteries in these provinces will allow you to have a green-friendly burial. Unlike our Southern neighbours, many cemeteries in Canada do not require a vault or grave liner, will accept a green burial casket, and do not require a headstone or footstone. Ask your local cemetery or funeral home to find the greenest solution near you.

Green Burial in Alberta

There are no full or hybrid cemetery grounds in Alberta. However, “The City of Edmonton Cemeteries is planning for 'green burial' areas in two of our seven cemeteries”.

Want to see green burial in Alberta? Get in touch with your local municipality or your local cemetery:

The City of Edmonton:
Call: 780-442-0974
Email: cemetery@edmonton.ca
Website

The City of Calgary:
Call: 403-221-3660
Email: CalgaryCemeteries@calgary.ca
Website

Green Burial in British Columbia

When it comes to green burial, B.C. is ahead of the game. British Columbia is home to Canada's first ever green burial space, and home to the only full, or conservation green burial cemetery in Canada.

Full:

The Denman Island Natural Burial Cemetery
Cemetery exclusive to past or present
residents of Denman Island.

Denman Island B.C.
6400 Denman Rd,
Denman Island, BC V0R 1T0
Website

Hybrid:

Royal Oak Cemetery
Non-for-profit community-owned hybrid cemetery in B.C. GBC certified

4673 Falaise Dr,
Victoria, BC V8Y 1B4
(250) 658-5621
Website

Mountain View Cemetery
City of Vancouver owned and operated hybrid cemetery. GBC certified

5455 Fraser St,
Vancouver, BC V5W 2Z3
(604) 325-2646
Website

Green Burial in Manitoba

There are no full or hybrid cemetery grounds in Manitoba. Want to see full green burial in Manitoba? Get in touch with your local municipality or your local cemetery:

City of Winnipeg
Call: (204)-986-4348
Email: cemeteries@winnipeg.ca
Website

City of Brandon:
Call: (204)-729-2150
Website

Hybrid:

Brookside Cemetery
3001 Notre Dame Ave,
Winnipeg, MB R3H 1B8
(204) 986-4348
Website

Transcona Cemetery
5014 Dugald Rd,
Winnipeg, MB R0E 0K0
(204) 986-4348
Website

St. Vital Cemetery
236 River Rd,
Winnipeg, MB R2M 5G6
(204)-986-4348
Website

Green Burial in New Brunswick

There are no full or hybrid green burial grounds in New Brunswick. However plans are underway to offer green options. Plans can be viewed here.

Green Burial in Nova Scotia

Want to see full green burial in Nova Scotia? Get in touch with your local municipality or your local cemetery:

Halifax
Call: (902)-490-4883
Email: cemetery@halifax.ca
Website

Hybrid:

Pleasant Hill Cemetery 
Lower Sackville,Halifax County,
Nova Scotia, Canada
(902)-425-6922
Website

Sunrise Park Inter-Faith Cemetery
2025 Prospect Rd, Hatchet Lake,
Nova Scotia, Canada B3T 1R9
(902)-852-4944
Website

The Burlington Kings County Cemetery Society
Barley Street, 
Burlington,
Nova Scotia
(902)-538-3387
(No website found)

Green Burial in North West Territories

Want to see green burial in the Northwest Territories? Get in touch with your local municipality or your local cemetery:

City of Yellowknife
Call: (867)-920-5624
Website

Green Burial in NL & Labrador

Want to see green burial in NL & Labrador? Get in touch with your local municipality, your local cemetery or Service Newfoundland:

Service Newfoundland:
Call: (877)-986-2600
Website

Green Burial in Nunavut

There are no full or hybrid green burial grounds in Nunavut. Permafrost and the threat of flooding are great concerns for Iqaluit Cemetery, Nunavut's only municipal cemetery ground.

Green Burial in Ontario

While Ontario has no full green burial cemeteries, many cemeteries offer hybrid services.

Want to see full green burial in Ontario? Get in touch with your local municipality or your local cemetery:

Bereavement Authority of Ontario
Call: (844)-493-6356.
Website

Hybrid:

Woodlawn Memorial Park
762 Woolwich Street,
Guelph, ON N1H 3Z1
(519)-822-1271
Website

St John's Cemetery
2878 St John's Dr,
Jordan Station, ON
(905)-641-5945
Website

Fairview Cemetery
4501 Stanley Ave,
Niagara Falls, ON L2E 2E8
(905) 354-4721
Website

Duffin Meadows Cemetery
2505 Brock Road North,
Pickering, ON L1V 2P8
(905)-427-3385
Website

Williamsburg Cemetery
1541 Fischer Hallman Rd
Kitchener, ON N2R 1P6
(519)-741-2880
Website

Meadowvale Cemetery
7732 Mavis Road
Brampton, ON L6Y 5L5
(905)-451-3716
Website

Cobourg Union Cemetery
110 Elgin St W,
Cobourg, ON
(905)-372-8687
Website

St. James Anglican Churchyard Cemetery
110 Elgin St W,
Cobourg, ON
(905)-372-8687
Website

Parkview Cemetery
335 University Ave,
Waterloo, ON N2J 4A8
(519) 725-9280
Website

Green Burial in PEI

Want to see green burial in PEI? Get in touch with your local municipality or your local cemetery:

The Peoples Cemetery Charlottetown
Call: (902)-892-8580
Email: thepeoplescemetery@gmail.com
Website

Consumer Services, Dep. of Environment, Labour & Justice:
Call: (800)-658-1799
Website

Green Burial in Quebec

Want to see green burial in Quebec? Get in touch with your local municipality or your local cemetery:

Office de la protection du consommateur:
Call: (888)-672-2556
Website

Full:

Sentiers Commémoratifs de la Rivière
Urns only natural cemetery
2480 Bd du Curé-Labelle,
Prévost, QC J0R 1T0
(450)-565-6464
Website

Hybrid:

Cimetière Catholique Granby
Offers an urn only green burial section where Bio-Urn can be planted
460 Rue Dufferin,
Granby, QC J2G 9G2
(450) 378-8777
Website

Green Burial in Saskatchewan

Note: We are in the process of confirming the details of a private green cemetery in Saskatchewan. Check back in soon!
Want to see green burial in Saskatchewan?
Get in touch with your local municipality or your local cemetery:

City of Saskatoon
Call: (306)-975-3308
Email: cemetery@saskatoon.ca
Website

City of Regina:
Call: (306)-777-7395
Email: cemeteries@regina.ca
Website

Green Burial in Yukon

There are no full or hybrid green burial grounds in the Yukon. However Grey Mountain Cemetery is "presently looking at including natural burials and scattering gardens in the next expansion phase scheduled to open in 2018.” You can view that plan here.

Want to see green burial in The Yukon? Get in touch with your local municipality or your local cemetery:

City of Whitehorse
Call: (867) 668-8325
Email: parks@whitehorse.ca
Website

Dawson City:
Call: (867)-993-5391
Email: info@dawsonmuseum.ca
Website

Posted by TalkDeath

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