Apparel group Hanesbrands has set itself ambitious energy reduction targets as part of its commitment to increase its use of renewable power sources.

The US company says it wants to cut carbon dioxide emissions by 15% and up its use of renewable energy to 30% from 2012. Water consumption has already fallen by more than 10%.

"Hanesbrands has quietly become a leader in energy management and aspires to be an international apparel industry leader in overall environmental responsibility and stewardship," said Hanesbrands chairman and CEO Chairman Richard Noll.

"Using sustainable practices and conserving natural resources to help mitigate our environmental footprint and to reduce costs are strategic ways we are creating business value."

Hanesbrands added it has been tracking its carbon footprint since 2007 - the first year the company was independent.

"Hanesbrands is leading the fight against climate change through greater energy efficiency," said US Environmental Protection Agency assistant administrator for air and radiation, Gina McCarthy.

"Hanesbrands' robust energy management program is a model for others and affirms that energy efficiency is our most cost-effective climate strategy."

The company's Hanes brand has started to incorporate its 'EcoSmart' recycled polyester and recovered cotton waste fibre into select fleece and sock products.

Hanesbrands adds it expects to save the equivalent of 2,600 barrels of oil and 380 tons of CO2 emissions by shrinking package sizes and switching to a lighter-gauge film for several core high-volume products.

"We don't have all the answers. In some cases, we don't even know all the questions yet," Noll said. "Going forward, we will save more energy, use less materials and reduce our greenhouse-gas footprint even further."

Hanesbrands has also launched a new corporate social responsibility website, whose environmental portion includes the CEO statement on environmental responsibility, programme details and key reporting metrics, including energy consumption, CO2 emissions, water consumption and waste produced.