What happened

The day after the stock market's big 4% one-day decline, the good news is that stocks are healing today. The tech-heavy Nasdaq, where much of the damage was done yesterday, was gaining 0.7% through 1:35 p.m. ET on Wednesday as individual tech stocks began recovering some of their losses.

In particular, electric vehicle (EV) charging network Blink Charging (BLNK -2.68%) is bouncing back from Tuesday's 5% loss to post a 4.2% gain today. Fuel cell pioneers Plug Power (PLUG -8.08%) and Bloom Energy (BE -4.02%) are recovering some losses as well, up 1.3% and 4.8%, respectively.

So what

The obvious answer for today's gains: Blink, Plug, and Bloom all represent alternative ways of powering cars, and with oil markets rebounding (Brent crude, for example, is up 2.3% today), that makes alternative energy sources relatively cheaper and more attractive.  

But there's also some stock-specific news helping these companies today.

Blink stock is getting a bit of an extra lift today from news that Newton, Iowa, announced it is installing two Blink charging stations in the city. For a company that says it has deployed over 51,000 charging ports across 25 countries, I think the addition of two more stations is kind of a silly reason to be bidding the stock up. But it is at least an incremental positive for Blink.  

Now what

On the other hand, the news lifting Plug and Bloom is a bit more substantial, if tangential. In an independent report today, investment bank BTIG announced that it is upgrading shares of fuel-cell truck maker Nikola (NKLA -0.13%) to a buy on the theory that the energy crisis in Europe is going to "pull forward wider scale adoption" of green hydrogen (gas created from water by electrolysis, using solar- or wind-generated electricity) as a power source.

BTIG thinks this is a positive for Nikola, as The Fly reports today, because a primary use of green hydrogen might be to power large trucks.

The corollary to that theory is that someone is going to have to make the hydrogen to fuel those trucks, and both Plug and Bloom are leaders in the effort to build infrastructure for producing hydrogen as a fuel source. And this, in a nutshell, is why Plug and Bloom are rising with BTIG's recommendation for another company.  

How long will it take to see if BTIG's theory is right? How long will it take for investors to be rewarded if BTIG is correct? It could happen sooner than you think.

According to analysts polled by S&P Global Market Intelligence, Bloom Energy -- which has never been profitable -- could become profitable as early as 2024. Plug Power, despite having a lead over Bloom in green hydrogen production, might have to wait as long as 2025 before it becomes profitable.

Being all too familiar with both companies' long histories of promising profits, but not delivering, I'm taking both those predictions with a grain of salt. Considering how the stocks are reacting to BTIG's news today, however, it seems I'm in the minority on that position.