Barack Obama goes wild, teams with Bear Grylls for climate change show

1 Sep 2015

US President Barack Obama is about to be one with nature as the US TV network NBC has confirmed he is to appear on English adventurer Bear Grylls’ TV show to observe climate change in action.

By some margin, Barack Obama will be the highest-profile person to appear on Bear Gryll’s show – Running Wild with Bear Grylls – which has traditionally featured figures from the world of Hollywood.

But now, The White House has confirmed the US president’s appearance on the show, which sees guests travel through harsh locations, with Obama expected to spend three days in the US’s most northerly state, Alaska.

According to the BBC, the reason for his appearance is to add further clout to future legislation that the US government is trying to bring in, such as a cap on CO2 emissions from the country’s power plants.

Despite being a state since 1959, no US president has ever visited the Alaskan Arctic before, which is about to change with Obama’s visit, where he will also address world government members from Arctic nations on the issue of climate change.

Barack Obama Alaska

An aurora over Alaska. Image via Joshua Strang/USAF

NBC said of Obama’s appearance: “President Obama will meet with Grylls while visiting Alaska to observe the effects of climate change on the area. The two will then come together in the Alaskan wilderness.

“President Obama will become the first US president to receive a crash course in survival techniques from Bear Grylls. The visit will be taped and aired on NBC later this year.”

Obama has been very active in the Arctic state of late, having just yesterday passed a decision to rename the state’s tallest and most famous mountain, Mount McKinley, to the name given by native Alaskans, Denali, meaning ‘great one’.

The US Interior Secretary Sally Jewell stated that it was not right for a mountain to be named after former US President William McKinley given the man never set foot in what was then a US territory.

“With our own sense of reverence for this place, we are officially renaming the mountain Denali in recognition of the traditions of Alaska Natives and the strong support of the people of Alaska,” she said.

Barack Obama image via Shutterstock

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic