‘Sea of Hope’ Boasts First Underwater Photo of an American President (Exclusive Video)

Obama looks pretty comfortable among the coral

President Obama is leaving the deep-end of American politics and diving head-first into ocean conservation.

The outgoing POTUS joins explorer Dr. Sylvia Earle and underwater photographer Brian Skerry on National Geographic Channel’s “Sea of Hope” Sunday. The crew, which also included teenage aquanauts, spent a year lobbying Obama to establish blue parks across their wet wilderness. They were rewarded for their perseverance.

The expedition culminates with Obama revealing that he created the world’s largest marine preserve in the northwestern Hawaiian Islands, as well as the first national marine monument in the Atlantic Ocean, according to Nat Geo. To celebrate these historic achievements, Nat Geo captured the first-ever footage of a U.S. president diving underwater.

“What we do in the next 10 years will impact what happens in the next 10,000 years,” a voiceover says early in the above clip, which is exclusive to TheWrap. “We are at a pivotal moment in history. Now is the time we must act.”

Obama agrees.

“It’s not enough to just talk about policy in the abstract. People have to see it and feel it and be able to understand what we’re fighting for, and why this is so important,” Obama says from a sandy beach, where a monk seal is completely disinterested in the commander-in-chief’s visit.

All of that is music to Dr. Earle’s ears, whether or not the monk seal agrees.

Watch the video above, and stop polluting the damn environment. That first photo of a U.S. President diving underwater can be found in the February issue of National Geographic magazine, available online now.

“Sea of Hope: America’s Underwater Treasures” premieres Sunday, January 15 at 7/6c on Nat Geo.