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back to article Council dives into crematorium-heated pool

Redditch Borough Council has agreed to proceed with its plan to use waste energy from a crematorium to heat a municipal swimming pool. The provocative scheme gained cross-party support, and a final vote on the proposal saw 25 of 27 councillors in favour, with the remaining two abstaining. The project involves sucking heat from …

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Coat

So...

will they have to stockpile fuel during the summer day(s) when the water needs less heating, saving the fuel blocks (bodies) for the winter when the heating needs to be turned up?

Will these fuel blocks be stacked around the outer walls like we see in picturesque scenes from the alps etc?

Just wanted to know that's all.

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Anonymous Coward

You've overlooked the fact that more people die in winter.

So stockpiling is less necessary, especially given current winter fuel prices.

Personally I'd love to get my house connected to something like this, I'd like nothing more than to tell my energy supplier to ram their gas up their hoop.

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Joke

too cold

That's all very well but what'd they do if they run out of fuel and water temperature drops below an acceptable level?

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@ too cold

That's easy... send all of the lifeguards out for an extended lunch break all at the same time. By the time they get back, you should have some more fuel waiting

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Joke

so...

Will one be able to organise a pool-party instead of a traditional wake to honour the beloved one? I'd assume that one could select it as an option when purchasing crematorium services.

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Anonymous Coward

Anyone remember ...

... the Monty Python undertaker sketch. Better avoid the cafe then - never know when they might "get an eater" in!

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Bit of broccoli and stuffing, delicious!

Tell you what, we'll eat your Mum, and if you feel guilty about it afterward we can dig a grave and you can throw up into it.

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Happy

@Steven Hunter

"Tell you what, we'll eat your Mum, and if you feel guilty about it afterward we can dig a grave and you can throw up into it."

Ever heard the expression "long pig"?

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Happy

Long pork?

Yes. The Comic Strip did a thing some years ago called "Eat The Rich".

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Go

Don't understand the fuss...

These crematoriums are gas-powered, right? It's not like they're flicking a lighter under a corpse and letting it burn itself out, throwing another one on top if the temperature of the pool drops a little low..

To me it makes sense to make use of the excess heat, rather than just let it go up a chimney as waste.

Also, can someone let me know why Unison are even involved? Are they now hoping to claim union dues from the recently deceased, or are they "representing" the views of the funeral directors and crematorium staff?

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Go

@seanj

That's exactly what I think. Contrary to belief in spontaneous human combustion, the human body does not burn well, and you need additional fuel to perform the act. That's why they build funeral pyres.

Seems perfectly sensible to me to recover the heat, and use it.

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Well, you can burn one up under its own energy, but thats even more messy

Incinerators for animals sometimes have the option for removing fat and making fuel for the incinerator itself. Takes a bit of energy to get a cow going, but if you have a pile of seal pups that washed up on the beach, they go up like match heads.

A bit more tricky at the crematorium. You could have the burger munchers powering the system for a few weeks when a car takes out a group of long distance runners, but families don't like it when people get mixed in together.

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...burning gas

Exactly the point missed in all the debates on the subject in the media. Does anyone know the ratio of heat from gas:bodies that could be extracted on average (and is Redditch's population averagely fat?)

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Anonymous Coward

@Sleepy1

Given that gas burners are required to heat the body and to get it to burn in the first place, the energy input to start it burning, and to reduce it to ashes (including the calcium phosphate in bones, which doesn't burn but does break down under high temperatures in an endothermic process) is larger than the output from burning it. In this case, the proportion of the waste heat coming from the gas burners would be 100%.

Of course, if they wanted to get even more energy from waste heat, they could attach heat exchangers to the mouths of Unison members and Daily Mail readers and harness all the hot air coming from those places. I might object to my local pool being heated from the noxious fumes emitted though...

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Redditch

"Exactly the point missed in all the debates on the subject in the media. Does anyone know the ratio of heat from gas:bodies that could be extracted on average (and is Redditch's population averagely fat?)"

Wasn't that the former constituency of Jacquie Smith, ex Home Secretary?

I seem to recall the West Midlands tops the list of UK counties for obesity at 29% of the population.

But is Redditch in the West Midlands?

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Congratulations to Unison

For managing to crowbar a political point into any discussion.

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WTF?

normally

Normally I'm pro union -

"The Conservative Council want to use excess heat generated by the incinerator to warm the water for swimmers. Commenting on the proposals Roger McKenzie, UNISON West Midlands Regional Secretary said:" etc

http://www.unison.org.uk/westmidlands/pages_view.asp?did=12364

However the local paper says:

"She said that undertakers and faith group representatives who attended meetings had been supportive and only a handful of resident had express concerns.

“Many have praised the council for being so innovative and willing to discuss the idea openly.”

She added that other councils were watching and would follow suit.

There was enthusiastic support from the opposition Labour and Liberal Democrat groups.

Labour group leader Bill Hartnett emphasised the green credentials of the project, saying that the cost saving is a secondary concern."

FFS!

They are already paying a huge wedge for the gas at the crem and also to heat the pool - why not go for the greener and cheaper option and use the waste heat.

Or is it that there are Unison member who would have the Union go back to Union roots which was employers and businessmen running restricted businesses for ther own pockets?

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Grenade

Unison...

Can frankly go take a flying f*** at a pig. The sooner the day comes that this dinosaur of an organisation ceases its meddling in government, the better.

Yeah, I don't like 'em...

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Grenade

Share and Enjoy

Unison stop meddling in government? Given the nature of the beast, that would be a bit tricky to do.

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Dead Vulture

Soylent Green !

What will they do with the burials ?

I'd advise parent to send their kids with a packed lunch.

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Anonymous Coward

Whats' the fuss

It's only around a hundred years ago that cremation was illegal and reserved for only the truely evil as it was seen as putting the body in hell.

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Happy

Re: Whats' the fuss

That one always puzzled me. Being cremated meant that there was no body to raise come the End of Days, so you were damned to hell.

I never did get a straight answer as to why it was that Satan could reconstitute you from ashes whereas that feat was beyond God.......

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Pint

Seems a little gruesome at first...

....but I would like to think that when I turn up my toes I do something useful with my last bit of earthly remains, give the local kids another 60 secs of fun in the local pool! I'm all for it.

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pay extra

I some folk don't want the cremation rebate that comes from allowing the heat to be re-used, then let them have the choice of paying the full price.

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Joke

Abbey Stadium Sports Centre Renamed

The Dead Pool.

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This post has been deleted by a moderator

Silver badge

Ouch

But won't stop Apple trying to patent it again.

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This post has been deleted by its author

Anonymous Coward

woops wrong website

Shurely you meant to post that comment here: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1354764/Sick-plan-heat-swimming-pool-plugging-crematorium-gets-ahead-cash-stapped-council.html

My pleasure.

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Troll

You are Today's Troll

AICMFP

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Boffin

Hg scrubbing

Radio4 did an article on this the other day. Apparently the crem has some kit to remove mercury from what would go up the chimney and it needs the gasses to be cooled significantly (down to 160C IIRC). The council were faced with the adding a heat exchanger and either dumping the heat with a potential compalint about global warming or doing some good with their 'free' energy. Bit of joined up thinking (IMHO) was applied et voila...

Maybe a few power stations could be run in a similar way and reduce the cooling tower clouds that can be seen for 30 miles as they dump 'waste' energy.

There was possibly another option, namely not putting mercury into the crem. I'm so glad they decided not to remove teeth from the customers. Might've caused controversy...

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They won't run out of

fuel, ever. If the stock is low, just throw couple of politicians in.

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Go

Splendid idea...

..just take the dust and ashes, mix with tar, and hey presto instant road repair mix.

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Who cares what happens afterwards?

I think it's an excellent idea. As far as I'm concerned when I've finished using this body anyone can do anything useful they like with it. After stripping out any reusable bits (unlikely given age and lifestyle admittedly) using it for heat, road repairs, fertiliser, sword tempering, Soylent Green manufacture, etc seems like a damned fine plan.

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Dead Vulture

unison FAIL

Roger McKenzie, regional secretary for Unison, told Reuters: "These proposals are sick and an insult to local residents."

Im insulted by this dick. I am a resident and discusted by this nob and his view. He isnt even from Redditch. Suggest he sticks his head up his bottom and minds his own.

GO for the plan, and FAIL for Unison.

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Troll

They can call it...

...The Soylent Heating Company.

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Silver badge
WTF?

Bet not many Chinese will be swimming there!

Chinese have an aversion to places and things associated with death.

You'll never find a Chinese person buying a house near a cemetery or in a hotel near one, either. The Caravelle Hotel in SaiGon is a suicide jumpers favourite spot and the Chinese avoid it, too.

In the swimming pool they possible would be worried that their ancestors might happen by, as they often do, on a day when the rest of the family is enjoying a dip. If you see a Chinese person burning make-believe money, often it is for their deceased family members.

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Happy

Who says local government doesn't innovate

I like this, and personally would be very happy to know that even on the way out I did something to help out.

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FAIL

Next up

Turning dead babies into soap.

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Coat

Well, I thought

that peanut oil is made from peanuts.

Olive oil is made from olives.

And baby oil...

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Pirate

Why the fuss?

Its not as if they're sticking the bodies in the pool, turning up the heat and making soup now is it?

Now that would be worthy of the title Soylent Green.

Unison should find much better things to complain about

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1/4 of *all* environmental Mercury is due to creamted dental fillings

And as other El Reg articles have shown Mercury is a *very* nasty long term poison.

I'm frankly amazed more (most?) crematoria don't have some kind of heat recovery system already.

If you choose to go with cremation it's tough to get the human body to ignite and I think anything which recovers some of that heat (within reason) is a brilliant idea. IIRC some power station cooling water is used to heat fish farms. Would anybody have found *that* idea as comment worthy?

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Paris Hilton

Funeral director's point of view

"... I think trying to save money due to the death of someone's family member or friend is a bit sick."

Yeah, folk selling $4,500 coffins do tend to think that way...

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Re : Eugene Goodrich

And have you seen the price of recyclable / cardboard coffins?

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Still Freaky

I just imagine after diving in, a scene like when Frodo falls in the dead marches in The Two Towers.

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It does seem a little weird..

..but they're going to be cremated anyway, so what's the harm?

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