Viewed from space at night, the East Coast megalopolis is a continuous strip of city lights that stretches over 600 miles, all the way from DC to Boston. Except for one last dark spot: the Quiet Corner. These 500,000 acres are one of the last vestiges of Southern New England’s dense forests. They provide clean water and air, climate amelioration, wildlife habitat, timber and non-timber forest products, and recreation.
The Quiet Corner seen from space (NASA Earth Observatory)
But this area of great natural and public value is not a single piece: it is a mosaic of small owners who may not always perceive their land as part of a larger ecosystem and may lack the resources to manage their forest. This in turn can lead to sale, real estate development, and fragmentation. So how can we maintain a living and working landscape when it is divided into many independent fragments?
The QCI creates partnerships that expand the educational and research opportunities for students and faculty at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, while supporting the work of private landowners, natural resource managers, and forest industry professionals in and around the Yale-Myers Forest. The QCI supports strengthened local livelihoods, increased forest health, and rural economic development for the long-term benefit of the land and those that live on it by providing knowledge, energy, and expertise to our partnering landowners and organizations.
Providing an unprecedented living laboratory for high quality natural and social science research, where our students’ skills meet the challenges of real world situations. With time, it will provide the first comprehensive repository of long term, region-wide research data sets on the biophysical, social and economic indicators associated with management, conservation and the “science of place”;
Strengthening local communities by promoting cooperation between owners and helping them get the best value from their woods, in line with the School Forests’ 8 decades as an innovative and responsible land steward;
Improving the health of our forests by connecting strategic natural areas: the Quiet Corner is part of a National Heritage Corridor designated by U.S. Congress and its watersheds have been prioritized for conservation by both the Nature Conservancy and the Connecticut DEEP “Green Plan.”
The Quiet Corner Initiative was created in 2010 as a unique form of cooperative where the faculty, students, landowners, the local forest products industry and conservation organizations work together as peers to improve the stewardship of our natural resources. It centers around the 8,000 acres of the Yale-Myers Forest - a self-sufficient and certified woodland among the oldest sustainably managed forests in the nation - and its four neighboring towns of Ashford, Eastford, Union and Woodstock. It focuses on three main areas: sound forestland management, renewable energy, and small-scale agriculture.
Please feel free to contact us with any question or comment. This website will be continuously updated as the project evolves and will tell you more about our work, our events, and how to get involved - whether you are a local owner, a student, or a conservation professional.