Federation of the Greens

Federation of the Greens

Infobox Italian_political_party
name_english = Federation of the Greens

leader =
leader1_title = Spokesperson
leader1_name = Grazia Francescato
leader2_title =
leader2_name =
leader3_title =
leader3_name =
leader4_title =
leader4_name =
foundation = 9 December 1990
dissolution =
headquarters = Via Salandra, 6 00187 Rome
newspaper = [http://www.notizieverdi.it/ Notizie Verdi]
membership_year= 2004
membership = 31,000 [http://www.cattaneo.org/archivi/adele/iscritti.xls]
ideology = Green politics, Pacifism,
coalition = The Left – The Rainbow
international = Global Greens
european = European Green Party
europarl = European Greens–European Free Alliance
website = http://www.verdi.it
colorcode = green

The Federation of the Greens ("Federazione dei Verdi", or just "Verdi") is a green and eco-socialist Italian political party. Its leader is Grazia Francescato, Minister for the Environment since April 2006 in Romano Prodi's centre-left government


Early years

The first official Italian Green symbol and political style was directly inspired by the Northern European environmentalist movements. The Green Lists, led by Gianni Mattioli and Alexander Langer, made their debut at the 1987 general election, when they gained 2.6% of the national vote.

At the 1989 European Parliament election there were two competing Green parties: the Green Lists and the Rainbow Greens, formed mainly by Radicals, including Adele Faccio, Adelaide Aglietta, Marco Taradash and Francesco Rutelli. In 1990 the two parties joined forces to form the Federation of Greens.

Government participation

The new party entered in alliance with the Democratic Party of the Left in 1993 (within the Alliance of Progressives) and was a founding component of The Olive Tree coalition in 1995. Following the 1996 general election, the Greens were part of the centre-left governments led by Romano Prodi, Massimo D'Alema and Giuliano Amato. Edo Ronchi was minister for the Environment from 1996 to 2000 and Alfonso Pecoraro Scanio Minister of Agriculture from 2000 to 2001

In the 2001 general election the Greens formed a joint list with the Italian Democratic Socialists: The Sunflower. The combination scored 2.2%, thus failing to surpass the 4% threshold. The Greens elected 7 deputies and 10 senators in single-member constituencies, as part of The Olive Tree coalition.

hift to the far left

After the end of the alliance with the Socialists, a much moderate outfit, the party shifted far to the left, prompting the exit of leading members as Edo Ronchi, Gianni Mattioli, Luigi Manconi, Massimo Scalia and Franco Corleone (Francesco Rutelli and Carlo Ripa di Meana had abandoned the party before, respectively in 1997 and in 1999). Since that point the Greens are self-considered part of the Italian "radical left", alongside with the Party of Italian Communists and the Communist Refoundation Party.

In the 2004 European Parliamentary Election the Greens stood as a separate list, gaining 2.5% of the national vote and electing 2 MEPs. In the 2006 general election, the party was part of the winning The Union and scored 2.1%, winning 15 out of 630 seats in the Chamber of Deputies. An alliance of Greens, Communists and Consumers scored 4.2% in the election for the Senate, electing 11 out of 315 senators, 5 of them Greens. Alfonso Pecoraro Scanio was inaugurated Minister of the Environment, while Paolo Cento, national coordinator of the party and leader of the "no global" faction within it, became Under-Secretary for Economy and Finance.

On the 10-12 November 2006 party congress, the party reinforced the political line traced by Pecoraro Scanio. The Greens decided anyway to re-open the doors to former members, such as Mattioli and Scalia, and set the 5-6% mid-term goal. The attempt of re-uniting the Italian Greens failed as soon as in January 2007, when Gianni Mattioli, Massimo Scalia and Franco Corleone finally left the party, citing that it was drifting too much the far left, and announced their intention to participate to the foundation of the Democratic Party.

In this way they reinforced the green faction within the Democratic Party, named Democratic Ecologists, alongside with Luigi Manconi, Edo Ronchi, Lino De Benetti and Stefano Semenzato (members of the Democrats of the Left) and Ermete Realacci, Gianni Vernetti, Franco Piro, Francesco Ferrante and Carla Rocchi (former Greens switched to Democracy is Freedom, where they met with Francesco Rutelli and Paolo Gentiloni, both former Greens). As a result "Legambiente", the largest ecologist association of Italy, has been more keen to support the Democratic Party than the Greens themselves.

2008 general election

On 8–9 December 2007, the Greens participated in the foundation of The Left – The Rainbow with the Communist Refoundation Party, the Party of Italian Communists and Democratic Left. The four parties formed a single list for the 2008 general election, obtaining just 3.1% of the vote, down from 10.2% of two years before, thus failing to enter Parliament.

Soon after the election, on 20 July 2008, Grazia Francescato was elected party leader, replacing Alfonso Pecoraro Scanio, with 300 delegate votes in the national congress of the party. Francescato, who represents the party establishment around Pecoraro Scanio, Paolo Cento and Angelo Bonelli, defeated two other candidates representing the modernizers within the party, Marco Boato (111 votes) and Fabio Roggiolani (63 votes). [ [http://www.rainews24.it/notizia.asp?newsid=84016 RaiNews24 - Francescato rilancia i Verdi: non siamo più quelli dei 'no' ] ] Even if those who proposed an alliance with the Democratic Party (notably Boato, leader of the Greens in Trentino) were defeated, the party seems to be headed to cut its ties with the far left.

Popular support

In their history the Greens were never able to reach the electoral success of many green parties all around Europe. They have a stable share of vote around 2% and experienced a slight decline in the last decade. Their characterization as party of the far left did not help them in Northern Italy, where they had their best results at the beginning (for instance 7.1% in the 1990 Venetian regional election).

The Greens are strong in cities and urban areas (Milan, Venice, Rome, Naples, etc.), in mountain regions, such as Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol and Aosta Valley, and in some Southern regions, such as Basilicata and Campania, where a Green is President of the Province of Naples since 1995. In general they gain momentum where NIMBY movements grow up against the construction of highways and landfills.


*Spokesperson: Gianni Mattioli (1991–1993), Carlo Ripa di Meana (1993–1996), Luigi Manconi (1996–1999), Grazia Francescato (2008–...)
*President: Franco Corleone, (1993–1997), Massimo Scalia, (1997–1999), Grazia Francescato (1999–2001), Alfonso Pecoraro Scanio (2001–2008)
*Coordinator: Angelo Bonelli (2001–2004), Paolo Cento (2004–2006), Massimo Fundarò (2006–...)
*Treausurer: Lino De Benetti (1991–1993), Marco Lion (1993–...)

*Party Leader in the Chamber of Deputies: Gianni Mattioli (1987–1989), Laura Cima (1989–1991), Massimo Scalia (1991–1992), Francesco Rutelli (1992–1993), Edo Ronchi (1993–1994), Gianni Mattioli (deputy-leader of the PDS's group, 1994–1996), Marco Paissan (1996–2000), Anna Maria Procacci (2000–2001), Alfonso Pecoraro Scanio (2001–2006), Angelo Bonelli (2006–2008)
*Party Leader in the Senate: Marco Boato (1987–1992), Carla Rocchi (1992–1994), Edo Ronchi (1994–1996), Maurizio Pieroni (1996–2001), Stefano Boco (2001–2006), Natale Ripamonti (deputy-leader of the PdCI-Green's group, 2006–2008)
*Party Leader in the European Parliament: Alexander Langer (1989–1994), Gianni Tamino (1994–1999), Giorgio Celli (1999–2004), Monica Frassoni (2004–...)


External links

* [http://www.verdi.it Official website]

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