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SCAR General News

Yves Frenot webIt is with deepest sadness we inform you that Yves Frenot passed away on Monday 7th February at La Rochelle in France, a few days before his 64th birthday.

Yves made a huge contribution to the French Polar Institute. He joined the Institute in 2003 to become scientific director alongside the then director, Gérard Jugie, and succeeded the latter in January 2010 to serve two terms as director until February 2018. He then moved on to new professional horizons worthy of his stature, becoming the scientific advisor to the French ambassador in Washington DC.

Before his long career at the Institute, Yves was a pillar of science in the sub-Antarctic islands. He had wintered over in Crozet Islands. As a CNRS researcher attached to the ECOBIO research unit in Rennes, he had become a world-reknowned specialist of terrestrial biodiversity in the Austral Islands but also of the dynamics of invasive species.

This passion for life in extreme environments and for the study of human impact led him to become heavily involved in the Committee for Environmental Protection of Antarctica (CEP), accompanying the work of the annual meetings of the Antarctic Treaty. First elected vice-chairman of this committee, he became its chairman in 2010, a strong international responsibility that he held until 2014. He was also the vice-chairman of COMNAP. Finally, he was very much involved in the European governance of the poles, through the European Polar Board (of which he was an Executive Committee member) as well as the European project EU-PolarNet, which drew up a European roadmap for polar research.

Yves was an exceptionally generous collaborator and contributor to SCAR, facilitating some excellent work, particularly on invasive species.  During his term as CEP Chair, he was instrumental in developing a productive and fruitful releationship between SCAR and the CEP. He was generous in sharing his invaluable experience and was a true leader.

Yves was a whole person with a zest for life, passionate, rigorous, and endowed with an immense drive and enthusiasm for his work. His early death leaves a great void in the polar community. Our thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues.