Q. Are you allowed to scatter someone’s ashes at any of the beaches? (Brunswick County beaches in particular.)
A. Federal law states that spreading ashes on the sea, which is considered a burial at sea, must be done at least three miles away from the shore. Federal law also requires that you report the burial at sea to the closest Environmental Protection Agency office within a month of the burial.
Spreading ashes in inland waterways, such as rivers and lakes, falls under the Clean Water Act and may require a permit from the local government.
According to the Funeral Consumers Alliance website, these laws are designed to protect waterways from pollution and because cremated human remains are not a health hazard, it is not usually enforced in these cases.
Date posted: May 20, 2013
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