The executive director of Papua New Guinea's Chamber of Petroleum and Mines denies that the Ramu nickel mine's deep sea tailings placement system was approved in a vacuum of legislation covering the practice.
The comment from Greg Anderson comes as public disquiet festers in Madang province about the environmental impact of the Chinese-run mine's system of dumping tailings into the Bismarck sea.
Local environmentalists say there is no law governing the practice of marine disposal of mine tailings.
But Mr Anderson says that the environmental impact of the Ramu operation was considered thoroughly under the existing legislation on mining and the environment.
"The Mining Act review will probably include more detailed sections on some of these things. They may be a bit more prescriptive in future but the Environment Act is the principle Act to cover where that sort of activity is approved."