Charles Bedford, Regional Managing Director, Asia-Pacific Region for The Nature Conservancy, has called New Zealand "a leader on the environment and conservation globally" in an interview with the New Zealand Herald.
Asked whether The Nature Conservancy is concerned about international media stories that question the legitimacy of New Zealand's vaunted clean, green image, Bedford said that there will always be people that throw stones when someone puts themselves forward as a leader.
"I think that's fair enough - it helps keep leaders honest and keep them working harder to maintain that leadership advantage...but when you really look at it, it's a pretty darn well managed system."
Bedford added that one of the best things about New Zealanders was the way they generally received such criticism.
"Kiwis take it seriously and ask, how are we going to fix it?
That's the classic Kiwi spirit, at least in my limited exposure here."