DCA’s newest conservation covenant (2013) is most unusual as, unlike other such covenants, it anticipates significant alteration to the natural features of the covenant area, at least in the short term. DCA donated a 1.06-ha corner of Central Park to the Denman Island Memorial Society (DIMS) for the establishment of a natural burial cemetery. The cemetery will conform to Green Burial standards, maintain the conservation efforts of DCA, and provide burial service to the residents of Denman Island and their families for an estimated one hundred year period.
As a condition of the donation, a conservation covenant has been registered on the land with DCA as the covenant holder. The cemetery will be developed incrementally and as burials are completed in a section, it will be left to regenerate into a natural forest. Green Burial standards require the use of biodegradable containers only and prohibit chemical embalming. Treed buffer zones will be left on two sides of the covenant area, “heritage” stumps (from the original logging of Old Growth trees) will be retained, and any additional plantings will be of indigenous species only. The cemetery will also accommodate scattering of ashes in a designated area. A Management Plan for the covenant area has been approved by both DCA and DIMS. The new Denman Island Natural Burial Cemetery was opened at a well-attended community ceremony on 11 October 2015.
For further information contact DIMS at http://dinbc.ca/contact-us/
photo by J Thornton