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Nissan Poised to Sell Green-Vehicle Credits Tesla Started: Cars

A new front is opening in the emerging market for electric vehicles -- not for selling cars, but for credits required to meet clean-air rules.

Starting this year, California is requiring the biggest automakers to sell increasing numbers of “zero-emission vehicles,” or ZEVs, such as pure-electric, plug-in hybrid and hydrogen-powered autos. Companies that fail to meet their quotas have the option of buying ZEV credits from rivals that exceed their targets.