Last month was the hottest June since records began and the thirteenth month in a row to set a temperature record, according to new data released on Monday from the European Union’s Copernicus Climate Change Service.

“These latest figures from the Copernicus Climate Change Service unfortunately highlight that we will be exceeding the 1.5 degrees Celsius level on a temporary basis with increasing frequency, on a monthly basis,” said the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Secretary-General Celeste Saulo.

The crucial 1.5°C threshold refers to the temperature rise above pre-industrial levels beginning in 1850.

“However, it is important to stress that temporary breaches do not mean that the 1.5 degrees Celsius goal is permanently lost because this refers to long-term warming over at least two decades,” she added.

Efforts to limit the long-term global average surface temperature to 1.5 degrees Celsius by the end of this century were officially endorsed under the Paris Agreement, put into effect in 2016.

The scientific community has warned that warming of more than 1.5 degrees Celsius may lead to increasingly severe climate change impacts and severe weather events, emphasising the significance of every fraction of a degree.

For example, every 0.1 degree Celsius increase causes “clearly discernible increases in the intensity and frequency of temperature and precipitation extremes, as well as agricultural and ecological droughts in some regions,” according to WMO, the UN weather agency.

WMO has warned that even at today’s levels of warming, the world faces devastating climate impacts. More extreme heatwaves, rainfall events and droughts, reductions in glaciers, and accelerating sea level rise are already ravaging the planet.