|Vultures in India. |
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Bodies can be polluting. In France, the cemeteries were cleared during the French Revolution due to the fact that they were full. Bodies were interred poorly in them leading to a variety of obvious problems. In order to remedy this, many cemeteries were exhumed and bones placed in the Catacombs. In the U.S. there have been cases of formaldehyde pollution near cemeteries that contain bodies embalmed with the chemical. In the 19th century, bodies were sometimes preserved with arsenic.
The Zoroastrian body disposal method is one that was also employed by some Native American groups. Yet, with all of the chemicals we take in our modern world as prescriptions, particularly as we approach death, there is concern that our medications will cause harm to birds or other animals if they were to consume us.