Aquamation, also known as alkaline hydrolysis, stands at the forefront of the evolving landscape of environmentally-conscious funeral practices. This innovative process offers a sustainable alternative to traditional burial and cremation methods, gaining traction for its eco-friendly attributes and minimal environmental impact. In essence, aquamation employs a combination of water, heat, and alkaline chemicals to gently break down the body’s organic matter, leaving behind only bone fragments. Currently, the state of Arizona is poised on the brink of legislative approval for aquamation, recognizing its potential to revolutionize end-of-life practices.

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Here are five things to know about the process: 

What is Aquamation? Aquamation is a water-based process that uses a combination of water, heat, and alkaline chemicals to accelerate the natural decomposition of the body.

How does Aquamation work? During the process, the body is placed in a specially designed chamber filled with a solution of water and alkali. Through gentle agitation and controlled heat, the body’s organic matter is broken down, leaving behind only bone fragments.

Elisa Krcilek is Vice President of Mountain View Funeral Home and Cemetery in Mesa.

Have funeral homes adopted Aquamation? Forward-thinking funeral homes are increasingly considering this new process as a viable alternative to traditional burial and cremation. Its eco-friendly nature and lower carbon footprint make it an attractive choice for environmentally-conscious families.

Is Aquamation being used in other parts of the United States? The process has been steadily gaining acceptance in various parts of the United States. With a growing awareness of its benefits, funeral homes in several states have begun offering this option to families seeking sustainable end-of-life solutions.

Where does Arizona stand on Aquamation? In Arizona, the status of legislation regarding aquamation is currently under review. The state is poised to potentially approve the use of aquamation as a recognized funeral practice, further solidifying its place in the spectrum of eco-friendly end-of-life options.

As Arizona moves forward in considering the adoption of aquamation, it signifies a pivotal moment in the evolution of funeral practices towards more sustainable and environmentally-conscious alternatives. With its potential benefits for both the environment and grieving families, the process offers a compelling option in the ever-evolving landscape of end-of-life choices. As discussions progress, it is anticipated that aquamation will play an increasingly significant role in shaping the future of funeral practices in Arizona and beyond.

Author: Elisa Krcilek is Vice President of Mountain View Funeral Home and Cemetery in Mesa. Founded in 1951, the family-owned funeral home is dedicated to helping others through difficult times and values giving back to the community. Cemetery and Advanced Planning Specialists, as well as Licensed Funeral Directors and Cremationists, are trained to provide exceptional service. For more information, visit