There are solar-powered street lights and even trash-powered lamps, and now here's one powered by you and me. With exercise equipment attached to a streetlight, the kinetic energy the user expends is transferred into batteries that partially power the energy efficient LED lamps in the light system.
The pole contains an interactive display that shows when the streetlight is operating off battery power provided by human input, and how much life is left in the battery. If the battery life is showing a low reading, the hope is that someone will be motivated to hop on and give it a charge.
The display will also give feedback to the person powering the machine on how many calories they've burned, perfect for those who track their exercise.
The CityLight Street Lamp concept was recently announced as a winner of a 2011 Green Dot Award. The Green Dot Awards are designed to recognize outstanding environmentally friendly products or services. The company behind the CityLight Street Lamp was not named in their submission.
It's hard to argue with the terrific idealism of giving individuals a way to help to save on public energy costs while simultaneously encouraging exercise and healthy living. But, whether or not people would actually hop on one of these devices — or whether they'd be durable enough for busy urban streets is hard to say (we won't even mention the theft factor).
Would you be wiling to donate your run or a few crunches on a piece of public exercise equipment on your local street corner?