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2 Aug, 2022 15:12

German crematoriums have a problem

The furnaces can’t function without natural gas, the industry says
German crematoriums have a problem

Crematoriums in Germany may have to fight for survival amid the deepening energy crisis, Reuters reported on Monday.

Reduced gas supplies from Russia and a feared possible complete cut-off may lead to a reduction in the number of functional crematoriums in Germany, the industry representatives have suggested to the news agency.

Amid the dwindling flow, crematoriums are switching off some furnaces, while keeping others running constantly, so these don’t cool down and require more gas to be reheated, Reuters writes. Not all crematoriums, however, have sufficient demand to justify the model, Svend-Joerk Sobolewski, chairman of Germany’s cremation consortium, told the agency.

In the event of any gas rationing, the sector should be prioritized because most crematoriums cannot function without gas, Sobolewski added.

“You cannot switch off death,” he explained.

Another possibility would be to reduce the average temperature of the ovens from the current 850 degrees Celsius (1562 degrees Fahrenheit) to 750C, which could save between 10% to 20% of gas, but the step has to be approved by authorities first, Reuters quotes Stephan Neuser, the head of Germany’s undertakers’ association, as saying.

Cremation is the most popular funeral practice in Germany, accounting for nearly three quarters of roughly one million funeral services each year.

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