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Pedal power helps fuel Times Square New Year's ball

Volunteers spin away on stationary Citi Bikes to generate electricity in advance of the famed New York celebration.

CBS News Staff
Citi Bike

When the 30,000 LED lights on the New Year's Eve ball at Times Square light up Tuesday night, onlookers will have pedal power to thank -- in part at least.

As CBS New York reports, six stationary Citi Bikes from the city's bike-sharing program have been set up to supply electricity for the lights.

April Campo of Maryland was among those spinning away on one of them over the weekend.

"I'm loving this," Campo said. "Isn't this a great idea? This is so fun."

The bikes pump out about 75 watts per hour, according to Citi spokesman Ed Skyler.

"If everybody does their job, that ball is going to light up, and it's going to be something we'll all remember," Skyler said.

The energy generated from the bikes through Monday is being stored in large batteries, then transferred to the grid to offset the power demands of the ball.

Campo said it was a great way to be green and do one's part for the massive celebration.

"I'm going to say, 'Look there. Look at what I did,'" she said. "I'll be telling all my friends about it."

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