Abstract Global NEWS is a global, spatially explicit, multi-element and multi-form model of nutrient exports by rivers. Here we present NEWS 2, the new version of Global NEWS developed as part of a Millennium Ecosystem Assessment scenario implementation from hindcast (1970) to contemporary (2000) and future scenario trajectories (2030 & 2050). We provide a detailed model description and present an overview of enhancements to input datasets, emphasizing an integrated view of nutrient form sub-models and contrasts with previous NEWS models (NEWS 1). An important difference with NEWS 1 is our unified model framework (multi-element, multi-form) that facilitates detailed watershed comparisons regionally and by element or form. NEWS 2 performs approximately as well as NEWS 1 while incorporating previously uncharacterized factors. Although contemporary global river export estimates for dissolved inorganic nitrogen (DIN) and particulates show notable reductions, they are within the range of previous studies; global exports for other nutrient forms are comparable to NEWS 1. NEWS 2 can be used as an effective tool to examine the impact of polices to reduce coastal eutrophication at regional to global scales. Continued enhancements will focus on the incorporation of other forms and sub-basin spatial variability in drivers and retention processes.