Today, national governments issue licenses to parties that want to conduct activities in space, and the countries where private companies operate are responsible for enforcing regulations.
"Enforcement is done by national government authorities, but a specialized space authority does not exist yet," Christensen said.
Space is becoming more crowded, with a surge in the number of companies looking to reap the benefits. Keller said that governments will have to restrict and control the expansion of private interests in the future.
One way to do that could be in the same format as existing climate agreements. Admittedly, the climate change agreements suffer from a lack of enforcement powers, but they do bring people to the table, which is a good start, she added.
"Legislation lags behind technology, almost every time," Keller said, and an accord should be struck in order for concerns to be heard equally across the board.
Current limitations to space exploration and travel capabilities mean that space mining would develop as a relationship between the private sector and the government, said Christensen, who added that he would not rule out the privatization of space activities once the industry matures.
Regardless of how it unfolds, it's likely that anything mined in the early stages will be used in space — not moved to Earth.
"The first step for space mining still lies in space — by using the resources mined to build in space until more technology is established," Keller said. "Until then, activities will likely remain in space."