What happened

Two of the biggest names in hydrogen fuel cells, Plug Power (NASDAQ:PLUG) and Bloom Energy (NYSE:BE), both gained on Monday, and Tuesday is seeing continued momentum for both, with a third fuel cell stock, FuelCell Energy (NASDAQ:FCEL), joining the party this morning. As of 10:15 a.m. EST today, Plug shares were up 11.1%, Bloom 12.3%, and FuelCell 16.7%.

Meanwhile, peer Ballard Power Systems (NASDAQ:BLDP) had a 7.7% gain.

GREEN NEW DEAL in rainbow colors and all caps

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

According to StreetInsider.com data, the buying of bullish call options outweighs the buying of bearish put options on FuelCell stock by a staggering 9-to-1 ratio. Plug and Bloom options show similar but somewhat less optimistic ratios: 4-to-1 and 1.6-to-1, respectively. 

Now what

One more catalyst that may be moving these shares higher today comes from Washington. Congress yesterday passed its long-awaited second stimulus bill. Within that bill, in addition to $600 checks for American taxpayers, are what The Washington Post describes as "a sweeping set of new renewable energy measures." In total, the Post has identified $35 billion in tax credits for renewable energy businesses, research and development funding, and money for upgrading the electric grid.

Although there doesn't seem to be mention of funding for fuel cell projects in particular, the legislation does earmark $500 million for R&D work into reducing industrial emissions, and fuel cells would appear to fit that bill.

This stimulus legislation could be behind today's run-up, and as a new, "greener" administration prepares to move into the White House, I would expect the enthusiasm to continue to build in the new year.

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis -- even one of our own -- helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.