After months of difficult negotiations, commissioners agreed to a goal they termed ambitious but realistic.
Some member states have been pushing for an even higher target amid concern over the security of gas supplies from Russia.
European leaders, meeting in October will decide whether the new goal should be legally binding.
The 30% target will be based on projections for 2030 that were made in 2007.
In a statement, the Commission said the new goal would build on existing achievements, pointing out that new buildings across the EU now use half the energy they did in the 1980s.
Industry is about 19% less energy intensive than it was in 2001, they argued.
Energy Commissioner Gunther Oettinger said the proposal would increase the security of supply and sustainability in an affordable way.
we accept it is ambitious but feel that it is unrealistic seeing as we are set to miss targets already set.
This harks back to our blog highlighting massive govt under investment
you can encourage further investments in energy saving technologies to the benefit of businesses, consumers and the environment all you like but what we really need is a culture change. we used to light a room with a 60w GLS bulb, now it is 300w - 500w of halogen light. we are over lighting rooms and wasting power on a massive scale.
President, Jean Claude Juncker, who recently told the European Parliament that a 30% target was a minimum for him is a politician looking for big numbers , a political legacy. we say it wont work and is not achievable.
Germany and Denmark had pushed for a tough, legally binding goal, because they have either better invested infrastructure or a small population making it easier for them to achieve the goal
good news for Europe's energy security and independence. Meaning no such good news for Putin.
I Think not, do you think Putin cares about 2030??? really?