Jessica Mitford wrote extensively about the unnecessary procedures promoted by the opportunistic funerary industry in America in her ground-breaking (hah!) 1963 book The American Way of Death, reissued in 1998. Embalming is not necessary, a waste of resources and a pollutant, not to mention an insult to the body and memory of the beloved deceased. Check out these resources for green gravesites.
Avoid embalming unless you are a Civil War soldier whose body will be sent back home by rail express, FedEx, UPS, or military cargo flight.