In this study, a polyethylene terephthalate manufacturing plant was subjected to environmental performance evaluation and analyses/benchmarking of water consumption. The objective was to determine processes/practices where significant water and related energy saving potential was present. Based on evaluations and analyses, a technology change was realized in heat transfer systems from water-to air-cooled process. As a result of the applications, soft cooling water consumption of the company was reduced by 46.7% which corresponds to water saving of 151,428 m(3)/year. Moreover, 117,848 kWh/year of energy was saved due to electricity saving in electric motors of pumps of heat transfer systems as well as pumps/fans of cooling towers. Owing to the improved energy efficiency, total carbon emissions of the company was reduced by 69,530 kg CO2/year. Auxiliary material consumption was also reduced since the maintenance requirements of heat transfer pumps were minimized. The total cost saving was 104,905 $/year, while the payback period was calculated as 6 months. This study was conducted to be used as a successful model to increased water and energy efficiency in manufacturing industries based on systematic environmental performance evaluations and benchmarking. Furthermore, it could serve as a building block in Turkey for the integration of cleaner and sustainable production approach into national agenda which is currently being structured by the European Union harmonization efforts of this country. (C) 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.