(See also a version of this question under politics, https://politics.stackexchange.com/questions/48764/why-arent-we-seeing-carbon-taxes-in-practice)
It seems that there are many advantages to carbon taxes, including pricing in the environmental cost and generating revenue (that could offset other taxes). So why are we not seeing them in practice, at least not very much of them? I can think of some reasons below, but I don't know which of these if any actually play a significant role in practice and/or are actually well motivated. Am I missing anything? Is there any good study of this?
Too difficult to implement / will generate an underground carbon economy. This would be a concern with many taxes, but it seems we should be able to have a pretty good handle on where carbon enters the economy given the necessary physical volumes and processing.
Will hurt economic activity. But it seems that this can be addressed by using the revenue to stimulate economic activity / reduce distortionary taxes.
Will create too big of a shock to the economy with unpredictable consequences. But the tax could be gradually introduced according to a schedule.
Unfair to industries that will suffer from this tax. But we generally don't seem inherently very concerned about disruption of industries (e.g., taxi industry) and it is hard to argue that such action would come as a surprise at this point. Also, again, the tax could be gradually introduced according to a schedule.
Will economically hurt people who can't afford it. But this could be addressed by using the revenue intelligently (or by targeting only certain types of carbon, e.g., airline tickets).
Politically hard to sell. Even if it is in their interest, too many citizens will reflexively complain about, for example, high gasoline prices. But would they really feel this way when combined with, for example, a check made out from the government distributing the revenue in a basic-income sort of way? Or is there some other effective way to clearly present it as not just an additional tax from a greedy government?
Industry is politically too powerful. It will attack/reward politicians based on their actions and launch massive public relations campaigns. But is it really that powerful or is that exaggerated in people's imagination?
Even though many of the above aren't actually true, citizens and/or politicians are unduly worried that they are true (or simply not well educated about the option), are risk averse, and therefore they don't pursue this route.