An article in The Daily Telegraph is my prompt for writing about mercury levels in the UK. 

In an article dated 25/01/21 a Daily Telegraph reporter explained that the Department for Environment and Rural Affairs (Defra) has given The UK Centre for Ecology and Hydrology ¬£564,000 to carry out a four-year study, into the danger of the effects of rising levels of poisonous mercury in the air. 

The rise is due to an increase in the number of cremations being carried out in the UK. Mercury is contained in dental fillings, so the toxic emissions are caused when a corpse is cremated. These emission levels are monitored, but due to the increase in the number of cremations taking place, due to Covid-19, the emission levels are rising. 

The first cremations in Britain took place in 1885, as burial was the customary way in which bodies were disposed of. Burial was still the primary method, up until 1967 when according to Douglas Davies there was a 50/50 divide. This social and cultural change has led to cremation becoming the more dominant corpse disposal method in the UK with the 2019 statistics from The Cremation Society being recorded as 78.13 %. 

There has been a rise in the interest of natural burial options, and we have written about one, that is in Dorset close to where we are based. We also have several natural burial sites listed in the Social Embers directory. 

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