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Ann Inc. reaches emission goal three years ahead of plan

New York -- Ann Inc. said Monday it has already surpassed its 2015 emission goal by reducing its carbon footprint by 8% per square foot.

The parent of Ann Taylor and Loft has now upped its objective, setting a new goal of reducing emissions per square foot by 30% by 2015.

The to-date reductions in carbon emissions were achieved through the implementation of key programs ranging from the installation of in-store energy-efficient lighting to behavioral change campaigns for associates.

"We're thrilled to surpass this goal earlier than expected,” said Kay Krill, president and CEO, Ann Inc. “It was not an easy task, but investing in new programs, coupled with the power of our passionate associates, have helped us get there."

The company devised an ACE program (Ann Conserves Energy) that has trained more than 18,000 store associates on energy efficiency best practices and behaviors, including lighting, equipment and temperature control settings. In 2012, Ann Inc. installed more than 50,000 LED light bulbs in almost 400 stores; the flagship Times Square store in New York City was also outfitted with energy-efficient LEDs, and the store's 12,000-light-bulb marquee now uses one quarter of the energy that it used when it was first installed.

"Our LED initiative and other in-store activities have produced an increase in energy efficiency in Ann Inc.'s stores by 10% per sq. ft. in only three years," said Jeannette Ferran Astorga, VP corporate social responsibility, Ann Inc.