Community Members Voice Concerns Over Proposed White Marsh Crematorium, Bill Introduced By County Council
WHITE MARSH - A proposed expansion of the Evans Funeral Chapel and Cremation in White Marsh is receiving push-back from community groups and residents.
According to Evans, construction of the planned facility is set to start in early 2024.
A petition created by the White Marsh Cowenton Community Association is calling on the county to block the project, citing concerns over air quality and the presence of nearby schools.
“Evans Funeral Home has submitted an application with the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) Air & Radiation to construct a crematorium at 11543 Philadelphia Road in White Marsh,” the petition states. “Within 1000 feet of this property are (2) daycare facilities, a church, and 100+ residences with families and children. Studies show that crematoriums emit gases and volatile organic compounds including carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxide, mercury, hydrocarbons and particulate matter/fine dust.”
The petition lists several studies that indicate crematoriums generate particulate matter that can “negatively impact the heart and lungs and is associated with some chronic illnesses and adverse birth outcomes.”
One of the signatories, Adam Ferguson, echoed language in the petition saying that the community is not concerned over the presence of a funeral home, just the creamatorium.
“I am signing because I don’t believe that we should have a crematorium in the center of our neighborhood. A funeral parlor itself is acceptable but health concerns that are related to a crematorium are very concerning. I strongly object to the crematorium in our community. Thank you,” Ferguson said.
WMAR reached out to Evans Funeral Chapel, who told the news service that the equipment used in crematoriums is safe.
"I’m not moving into White Marsh to ruffle people’s feathers," Evans told the news service. "I want to be a part of the community and serve the community there."
The petition has 191 signatures as of the publishing of this story, and the Baltimore County Council seems to have taken notice.
A bill was introduced last week by Baltimore County Councilman David Marks that would prohibit the construction of crematories within 500 feet of any residential property.
Bill 25-23 is scheduled for discussion in two weeks.