GUIDELINES FOR ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION IN SEA BURIALS OFF THE COAST OF GUAM
Sea burial is another means of ceremonial process on the Island of Guam when one’s family member, friend, and/or those closest to them passes away. Guam Environmental Protection Agency follows Federal Regulations rules IAW the technical details in Title 40 CFR §229.1 Burial at sea which states:
(a) All persons subject to title I of the Act are hereby granted a general permit to transport human remains from the United States and all persons owning or operating a vessel or aircraft registered in the United States or flying the United States flag and all departments, agencies, or instrumentalities of the United States are hereby granted a general permit to transport human remains from any location for the purpose of burial at sea and to bury such remains at sea subject to the following conditions:
(1) Except as herein otherwise provided, human remains shall be prepared for burial at sea and shall be buried in accordance with accepted practices and requirements as may be deemed appropriate and desirable by the United States Navy, United States Coast Guard, or civil authority charged with the responsibility for making such arrangements;
(2) Burial at sea of human remains which are not cremated shall take place no closer than 3 nautical miles from land and in water no less than one hundred fathoms (six hundred feet) deep. All necessary measures shall be taken to ensure that the remains sink to the bottom rapidly and permanently; and
(3) Cremated remains shall be buried in or on ocean waters without regard to the depth limitations specified in paragraph (a)(2) of this section provided that such burial shall take place no closer than 3 nautical miles from land.
(b) For purposes of this section and §§229.2 and 229.3, land means that portion of the baseline from which the territorial sea is measured, as provided for in the Convention on the Territorial Sea and the Contiguous Zone, which is in closest proximity to the proposed disposal site.
(c) Flowers and wreaths consisting of materials which are readily decomposable in the marine environment may be disposed of under the general permit set forth in this section at the site at which disposal of human remains is authorized.
(d) All burials conducted under this general permit shall be reported within 30 days to the Regional Administrator of the Region from which the vessel carrying the remains departed.
Documents for Burial at Sea Clearance:
- Death Certificate
- Burial at Sea Request